Carlinville council hears from AG’s office rep
CARLINVILLE (Feb. 8, 2018) – Identity theft and consumer fraud are two issues that affect a number of people in this country every day, every week, every year.
At Monday’s Carlinville City Council meeting, Paul Ferrero, a representative of the Attorney General’s office, gave a presentation to the council on what can be done to help protect the citizens of Carlinville.
While the elderly are more likely to become a victim, with the different ways that fraud is being committed these days, nobody can go undetected as a possible victim.
Ferrero calls the Attorney General’s office “the law firm for the state of Illinois.”
It deals with issues involving the state being sued and litigation, but also there to help protect the state’s general population.
“We rely on the consumer ourselves,” Ferrero said. “When you encounter a problem, you should file a complaint.”
It is a simple form that can be completed on the state’s website, www.IllinoisAttorneyGeneral.gov, or by contacting the office via telephone.
Different programs and services offered through the Attorney General’s office include Consumer Protection – with tips on preventing consumer fraud, including home repairs, impostor scams, telephone and online marketing and health care.
The office also has an identity theft hotline, providing one-on-one assistance reporting a crime to the local law entities and financial institutions, repairing their credit and preventing future problems.
Programs are also available for student loan help, homeowner relief, public utilities and crime victims. The office helps in protecting children and families, helps with child support enforcement and advocating for older residents.
As far as identity fraud, Ferrero suggests that citizens protect their personal information, and not showing a social security card to anyone and not even carrying the social security card on the person.
Citizens are also urged to review their credit report. There are three companies, Equifax, Experian and TransUnion, which provide information on your credit.
If one needs to place a fraud alert on a credit report, then that person is entitled to free copies of credit reports.
A security freeze can also be placed on the credit report, which allows the credit report not to be sent to another party without prior express authorization. This service is free for those 65 and older, those in the active military or have been a previous victim of fraud. For those new to Equifax, the service is also free. Otherwise, it is $10 to have the freeze put on the credit report and $10 to take it off.
There are the usual scams going around, including those involving college kids’ grandparents being notified that they’ve been in an accident and needs money wired to a certain location.
“We’ve seen smart, engaging people send money and then it’s pretty much gone once it is wired somewhere overseas,” Ferrero said. “It is very sad.”
Tax season is approaching and Ferrero reminds people that in most instances, the IRS will not contact people via a telephone call.
Those who need more information can contact the Springfield office at (217) 782-1090. The consumer fraud hotline is (800) 243-0618 and the identity theft hotline is 1-866-999-5630. Senior citizens consumer fraud hotline is (800) 243-5377.
Councilman Cindy Campbell gave the latest update on the Illinois Allural Regional Water Company, of which she represents the council.
A deadline of March 28 has been set for any interested entities to make a final determination whether or not they will be willing participants in the water company formation.
“We are in a holding pattern until we discover who is in and who is not,” Campbell said.
The council approved a $5,000 payment be made to the IARWC for the pay request.
Standard Addition Water Main
The board approved Heneghan and Associates work order of $73,911.02 for construction engineering services for the Standard Addition water main replacement for the city of Carlinville.
The project will replace around 2,350 lineal feet of water main within specified alleys in Standard Addition. DCEO funds are anticipated to be used for funding for the construction portion. DCEO funds cannot be used for engineering costs.
Three correspondence letters were approved by council and placed on file by the city.
Carlinville High School students in the all-school musical will have a party following the performance on March 17. Musical director Lori Reiher requested that curfew for those students be extended until 1:15 a.m. on March 18. The party takes place at the American Legion Hall.
The Macoupin County Relay for Life is requesting use of the square on June 16 from 4 p.m. to 10 p.m. for its annual event. Booths will be set up on the grass and inner circle of the square, and the plan is to set up the event like last year, which received great feedback..
Jeff Hart, Carlinville Swing 8-under baseball coach, is asking to sell Krispie Kreme donuts as a fundraiser on March 10 on the town square and local businesses.
All three correspondence were placed on file.
The next council meeting is slated for Monday, Feb. 19 at 7 p.m.