Updates

At a joint listening session between the Federal Trade Commission and the Colorado Attorney General’s office, I recruited a team of consumer advocates to raise issues from fraud and price gouging to abusive predatory products and debt collection. One theme that stands out - we’ve got a lot of talented players in Colorado working to protect consumers, but we’re not yet playing as part of a larger “Colorado Consumer Protection” team.

On September 18th, 2015, the world learned VW had misled hundreds of thousands of people into buying dirty, diesel vehicles designed to avoid emissions standards. Five years later, we looked back at our campaign to hold VW accountable and highlighted how tens of millions of dollars from a legal settlement and a customer “buy back” program has helped Coloradans head toward a cleaner, electric-powered future.

News Release | US PIRG Education Fund | Consumer Protection

FTC settles first case against VoIP provider for allowing illegal robocalls

This FTC settlement must be a wake-up call to phone service providers so they do more to protect consumers. If not, the FTC must be vigilant in going after companies that enable the immoral practice of preying on consumers. And the FCC should require providers to block spoofed calls that we all know are scams.

As we have seen through the wildfires raging throughout the state, climate change and its devastating effects aren’t slowing down, and it costs Colorado a lot. But a big climate change solution can actually save us money--electric vehicles. We hosted a webinar with the City of Denver, Consumer Reports, and CALSTART to talk about the savings you can get when you switch from gas-powered vehicles to electric vehicles and available resources that make electric vehicles more affordable. Here’s some of the key things we covered: 

In 2018, 77% of Colorado voters voted yes on Proposition 111 to cap payday loan APRs at 36%. Unfortunately, a proposed federal rule would allow lenders to bypass our protections and charge triple-digit rates again. This is a bad idea and a coalition of organizations, businesses, and state legislators agree.   

News Release | CoPIRG | COVID-19

Victory: Gov. Polis signs price gouging bill into law

In response to the proliferation of unscrupulous sellers attempting to profit off of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, Gov. Jared Polis signed a bill this week giving the attorney general greater ability to protect Coloradans from price gouging. The law (HB20-1414), sponsored by Reps. Mike Weissman and Brianna Titone and Sens. Mike Foote and Brittany Pettersen, makes it illegal for entities to sell food, fuel, medical supplies or other necessities for an excessive price during a declared emergency. Colorado will join the nearly 40 states that have specific price gouging statutes. 

News Release | CoPIRG | Transportation

Colorado joins electric vehicle truck pact

Colorado joined 14 other states plus the District of Columbia to announce today that they will set landmark goals for zero-emission trucks. CoPIRG joined clean car advocates in applauding the Polis administration’s decision to join the pact through an MOU that sets targets for achieving full electrification of medium- and heavy-duty vehicles, along with interim sales targets for truck manufacturers. 

Kids need to be exposed to as little air pollution as possible. A key way that we can preserve the promises of the future is ensuring that the buses they take to and from school and field trips are powered by electricity and not fossil fuels. Xcel Energy has released their Transportation Electrification Plan (TEP), and this plan has a proposal to invest over $2 million in helping schools make the switch from dirty gas-powered school buses to clean electric school buses. 

 

On May 15th, Xcel Energy released their first Transportation Electrification Plan (TEP). It’s their proposal to spend $101.5 million on transportation electrification - things like the infrastructure to support more than 18,000 charging stations, 100,000 new electric vehicles, electric school buses, and community charging hubs.  One thing’s for sure: this is a big deal.

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