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For Immediate Release

Media Contact:
Shanetta J. Paskel, 410-576-7939
spaskel@oag.state.md.us

Attorney General Gansler Settles with United Propane
Company agrees to honor price guarantees

Baltimore, MD (October 16, 2008)- Attorney General Douglas F. Gansler announced today that his Consumer Protection Division has reached a settlement with Inergy Propane, LLC, doing business as United Propane (“United Propane”). United Propane is headquartered at 205 Najoles Road, Millersville, MD 21108.

United Propane entered into multi-year agreements to supply propane gas to residential consumers at the Symphony Woods development in Centerville, Maryland. Several consumers residing at Symphony Woods signed addenda to their service agreements that fixed the price per gallon for the propane gas over the terms of the agreements. The Attorney General’s Office alleged that after the original owners of United Propane sold the company to Inergy Propane, LLC, a Kansas City-based propane gas supplier, United Propane began raising its prices in violation of the addenda.

“Businesses cannot change the bargained for terms of their contracts with consumers, particularly terms related to the price of any goods or services,” said Attorney General Gansler. “I am pleased that consumers will be receiving refunds and that United Propane will be honoring its contracts.”

Although United Propane denied that it violated any laws, under the settlement agreement it has agreed to honor any price guaranteed by any customer contract and it will pay restitution to the consumers in the amount equal to the amount it charged consumers above the guaranteed price. United Propane also agreed not to alter any terms of its existing contracts with customers. The company also agreed to pay the Office $5,000 for its costs and $5,000 as a civil penalty.

Consumers eligible for restitution under the settlement will be contacted by the Consumer Protection Division.

   

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