SACRAMENTO, Calif. /California Newswire/ — As part of the state’s ongoing efforts to protect Californians amid the national surge in COVID-19 cases driven by the Omicron variant, Calif. Governor Gavin Newsom has signed an executive order establishing consumer protections against price gouging on at-home test kits.
Helping to improve access to these tests at a fair price, the order generally prohibits sellers from increasing prices on COVID-19 At-Home Test Kits by more than 10 percent. The order also gives additional tools to the California Department of Justice and Attorney General’s Office, District Attorneys and other local law enforcement to take action against price gougers.
Moving to bolster California’s robust testing program, Governor Newsom yesterday announced the deployment of more than 200 Cal Guard members to expand capacity at 50 testing sites around the state. This effort is in addition to the existing 6,000 testing sites that have been set up across California, the recent demand-based expansion of hours at state-operated sites and the 9.6 million tests that the state has distributed to schools since early December.
The Administration earlier today unveiled Governor Newsom’s proposed $2.7 billion COVID-19 Emergency Response Package, including $1.2 billion to bolster testing efforts through expanded hours and capacity at testing sites, distributing millions of COVID antigen tests to local health departments, clinics, county offices of education and schools, and more. This effort includes a $1.4 billion emergency appropriation request to the Legislature for California’s immediate needs. The package also includes investments to accelerate vaccination and booster efforts, support frontline workers, strengthen the health care system and battle misinformation.
A copy of the Governor’s executive order today can be found here (PDF) https://www.gov.ca.gov/wp-content/uploads/2022/01/1.8.22-EO-N-2-22-Price-Gouging-Test-Kits.pdf .