Dalton Carpet Retailers Told to Stay Away from Wholesale ClaimsIn his column titled "Carpet retailers have until Jan. 31 to comply with act" that appeared in the December 17, 2010 edition of Dalton’s Daily-Citizen, Carpet and Rug Institute President Werner Braun talks about a recent controversy that erupted in the Dalton area when several local carpet outlets were fined by the Governor’s Office of Consumer Protection for using the term “wholesale” in a way that violates Georgia law 10-1-424, which was enacted in 1963 and describes how the term may be used and by whom.
From the article:
“I would be willing to bet that we all see this word at least once a day while driving through town on a store window, a billboard or during a local commercial on the evening news. Still, you have probably seen in news reports that some Georgia businesses have been accused of breaking this law, including some local carpet retailers. At the request of the Governor’s Office of Consumer Protection (GOCP), CRI has taken on the responsibility of delivering the message from the GOCP to the affected businesses in Dalton and the surrounding areas.
“Specifically, the relevant Code section OCGA (Official Code of Georgia Annotated) 10-1-424 provides that it is unlawful:
(1) For any person, firm, association or corporation to misrepresent the true nature of its business by use of the words “manufacturer,” “wholesaler,” “retailer” or words of similar import; or
(2) For any person, firm, association or corporation to represent itself as selling at wholesale or use the word “wholesale” in any form of sale or advertising, unless such person, firm, association or corporation is actually selling at wholesale those items advertised for the purpose of resale. For the purpose of this Code section the term “wholesale” means sale made for the purpose of resale and not one made to the consuming purchaser.
‘The Governor’s Office of Consumer Protection has received numerous complaints against a wide variety of businesses that are violating this statute, including complaints against carpet and flooring businesses. These violations appear in many forms and forums, including print and electronic media, the Internet, direct mail fliers, billboards and showroom displays.
“This agency will continue to pursue these cases to protect consumers from deceptive practices and support businesses that are in compliance with the law.’”
Editor’s note: this issue is set to be addressed during the 2011 session of the Georgia General Assembly and further updates will be published in the CRI blog.