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California lawmakers meet to discuss oil industry's high gas prices

California lawmakers meet to discuss big oil's high gas prices
California lawmakers meet to discuss big oil's high gas prices 03:03

California lawmakers returned to work for a special session on gas prices. State lawmakers convened on Monday to swear in new members and elect leaders for the 2023 legislative session. 

Democratic Gov. Gavin Newsom has also called lawmakers into a special session on that same day to begin work on a proposed penalty for oil companies when their profits surpass a certain threshold. 

Newsom unveiled a plan to fight against suspected price gouging. 

"We're talking about a penalty for gouging people," Newsom said. "We're talking about people that are taking advantage of you, raking in billions and billions of dollars of excess profit." 

Experts gave tips to CBSLA Monday on how to save at the pump in the meantime. 

"So this is the time when there's a big payoff from shopping around and driving a few extra blocks," said UC Berkeley professor Severin Borenstein. "Because you can often find a discount of 60, 70, 80 cents a gallon within a few blocks."

As part of Newsom's plan, more power would be given to state agencies to monitor the pricing and profit of the oil industry. 

Experts in the oil industry said it is not greed spiking prices, but government taxes and regulations. 

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