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Kentuckians have lost a lot as a result of the March 2 tornadoes.
If you had damage be on the lookout for those who may want to prey on your misfortune. Often, after an area has been hit by a natural disaster, there will be an influx of scam artists and fly-by-night contractors.
Consumers can do several things to prevent becoming the victim of a scam or unscrupulous contractor. The Kentucky Office of the Attorney General notes to be weary of anyone who asks for cash for the entire job up front as this is a common practice among scam artists. Often, they will take your money and leave before starting or finishing a job.
Another red flag is contractors who drive vehicles with out-of-state license plates asking extremely low prices for repairs.
Use these tips from the Kentucky Office of the Attorney General:
• Use local companies or repairmen.
• Check out unfamiliar companies through the Better Business Bureau.
• Demand a written contract.
• Get estimates for repair work from several contractors.
When deciding on a contractor, make sure the contractor is licensed, bonded and insured.
Contractors need to have proof of liability coverage and workers’ compensation coverage in case any workers are injured on the job.
Workers’ compensation coverage is required by state law for companies with even one part-time employee, but many companies still do not have this insurance, as carrying both it and liability insurance can be expensive for employers.
If a company doesn’t have workers’ compensation coverage, and one of its employees is injured on your property, the employee can sue you.
To protect yourself, ask a potential contractor to give you the name of their insurance company and contact the insurance company to make sure the contractor is covered for both liability insurance and workers’ compensation.
Ask the insurance company for a certification that shows the contractor’s coverage. The certification will have the policy number on it in the event of an accident.
Homeowners can contact the Security and Compliance Division of the Kentucky Labor Cabinet at 1-800-731-5241 for compensation related questions.
If you suspect someone is a scam artist or fly-by-night contractor, contact the local law enforcement. Or call the Disaster Fraud Hotline at 1-855-450-5645 to report price gouging or fly-by-night contractors.
This information was shared by Bob Flashman, UK Extension Specialist for Family Resource Management.
The A-B-C-D-E of preventing childhood obesity
Childhood obesity has become a national health crisis. One in every three children in the United States is overweight or obese.
This is a cause for concern and action because obesity causes about 112,000 deaths each year. One third of all children born in the year 2000 are expected to develop type 2 diabetes during their lifetime.
Overall spending on obesity increased from $40 billion to $147 billion in the past 10 years. These are frightening facts.
Ingrid Adams, University of Kentucky Extension Specialist for Food and Nutrition, suggests to use the following strategies to help prevent your children from becoming obese or even overweight which too, is very dangerous to their health.
• Avoid foods high in added sugar and fat
• Bring the family together for family meals
• Choose low-fat or fat-free dairy products
• Drink water instead of soda or juices with added sugar
• Eat more fruits and vegetables
Dates of interest
April 19, 26, May 3, 10, 17, 24:4-H Sewing, 4-6 p.m., Carroll County Extension Office.
April 19:“Creative Yard Art” program, 6 p.m., Carroll County Extension Office.
April 24:Northern Kentucky Homemakers Council, 1:30 p.m., Owenton County Extension Office, Owenton.
April 25, May 9, 16, 23, 30:4-H Foods, 3:30-5:30 p.m., Carroll County Extension Office.
Grace Angotti is Carroll Co. Extension agent for family and consumer sciences. Call her at (502) 732-7030 or send e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org.