Kansas Attorney General Derek Schmidt’s office will mark National Consumer Protection Week, March 4-10, with free document destruction events throughout the state. Schmidt said on Tuesday, that his office works hard year-round to protect consumers, and next week, he plans to place a particular focus on helping Kansans protect themselves from identity theft and stay safe from scams. His office will sponsor free document destruction at 10 locations throughout the state. Securely shredding personal documents is an important step toward preventing identity theft. If you are going to participate, you are asked to limit your documents for destruction to three small bags or boxes. Shredding will be done onsite at most locations, with the exception of one in Topeka, where documents will be securely transported to a shredding facility. The complete schedule and additional information can be found at www.InYourCornerKansas.org or by calling 1-800-432-2310.
Archives for February 2018
The Rotary Club of Winfield will be host a groundbreaking ceremony for the Performance Venue project on Saturday at 1:00 p.m. in Island Park, west of the playground. Community members and supporters of the project are invited to help commemorate the event. The project is estimated to be completed in May. The Rotary Club is working in partnership with the City of Winfield and with the support of community to complete the Performance Venue project in celebration of the club’s 100th Year of service in Winfield. ThePerformance Venue will be available for community use, including musical and theatrical performances as well as weddings and other events beginning this summer. The total cost of the venue is estimated to be $150,000, to date the group has received contributions totaling nearly $110,000. In order to complete project, the club hopes to raise remaining funds before the end of April. The structure will include a space for donor recognition. More information about gifts and pledges to benefit the completion of the project can be found at www.legacyregionalfoundation.org.
Some areas of Winfield were left without power for several hours Saturday. The problem was attributed to an open circuit at a substation. But unlike back in October, when birds caused an outage and many residents complained about the outage reporting phone line being constantly busy, this time things went more smoothly… well, sort of. While updates were posted to the city’s official Facebook page on Saturday, to notify customers of the outage and when power was expected to be restored, the automated message on the phone line was not active. Winfield officials say since then, it has been activated, and next time around, it should be working. The number to call to report an outage by the way, is (620) 221-0404. Now, callers should get the automated message after three or four rings.
Three Kansas auto dealerships have been fined for violating the Kansas Consumer Protection Act by using prize-notification mailings that did not comply with state law. Lewis Auto Plaza, Inc., of Topeka; Lewis Automotive Group, Inc., of Hays; and Womack Sunshine Ford, Inc., of Concordia, were each fined for violating the prize notification statute. The three consent judgments were approved by judges in their respective district courts this month. The defendants were also permanently enjoined from future violations of the law and ordered to pay the attorney general’s investigation costs. Attorney General Derek Schmidt accused the three defendants of mailing to consumers “prize notification” flyers that did not comply with Kansas law. The prize notifications failed to disclose to consumers the value of the prize and the odds of winning in immediate proximity to the prize listing in the manner required by law. For tips on staying safe from mail order scams, visit the attorney general’s consumer protection website at www.InYourCornerKansas.org.
The Kansas Teacher of the Year 2018 team will be at Southwestern College on Thursday, March 8, in Deets Library’s Murray Reference Room. The public is invited to attend and there is no admission charge. The event is sponsored by the Southwestern College Ed Builders and funding is provided by the Southwestern College Student Government Association. There will be a meet-and-greet at 5 p.m., followed by a light dinner. You are asked to RSVP, as seating is limited. The Kansas Teacher of the Year team will have a presentation at 5:45 p.m. For more information or to make dinner reservations, contact Sheryl Erickson, associate professor of education at Southwestern College, at (620) 229-6360.
The Arkansas City Chamber is hosting a luncheon for CowleyHealthWorRX on Tuesday, February 27th from noon to 1pm at South Central Kansas Medical Center of Ark City. CowleyHealthWorRX is providing Primary and preventive healthcare services to employers and families and individuals at a clinic at South Central Kansas Medical Center in Ark City. For larger, self-insured employers the benefits are immediate: more, better healthcare at a lower price for their trust fund. For fully insured employers the benefits are accrued over time as the insured population of employees and their family members decreases the utilization of healthcare in the expensive, traditional, fee-for-service market. For all employers, adopting CowleyHealthWoRX clinic means having a highly valuable additional benefit to retain and recruit employees in a tightening labor market: zero-copay, zero-deductible, unlimited access to primary and preventive healthcare at a price which is a fraction of the price incurred through insurance. The luncheon is an informative event with a free lunch for all interested employers and individuals. Call Ark City Chamber to register 442-0230.
A 15-year-old Arkansas City High School student was arrested on Friday by Arkansas City Police, on suspicion of making a criminal threat. According to a press release from Arkansas City Public Information Officer Andrew Lawson, police were called on Friday by staff at the high school on Radio Lane, about the juvenile that they said made comments that he hated everyone and was going to shoot the school up. Based on information gathered during the investigation, police arrested the juvenile student. He later was released to the custody of his parents. No further information is being released at this time and the investigation is ongoing. The name of the juvenile is not being released at this time, due to his age.
Westar Energy is alerting customers that imposters claiming to work for the company are threatening to disconnect service and asking for prepaid cards as payment. Several customers have contacted Westar Energy’s Customer Relations Center after receiving suspicious phone calls.
Some imposters, according to Westar, are very convincing. They may use websites that allow them to manipulate caller ID, making the call appear to come from Westar. They speak with authority.
When the targeted customer calls the phone numbers provided, the person who answers sounds
like they work for Westar. In some cases, callers may even provide information like amount due
that makes them sound credible. Westar says, “Don’t fall for it!” Scammers create a sense of urgency to get customers to act quickly rather than allowing them time to check their account. Westar Energy will never require a pre-paid card for payment. Also, the company says they will notify customers multiple times in advance if service may be interrupted for non-payment. Before acting on one of these calls, check your records to see if a recent payment has been made. If you are still unsure, call the Customer Relations Center, 1-800-383-1183, and check your account status. More about identifying scams can be found online at www.westarenergy.com/scams
Arkansas City will officially dedicate its new Water Treatment Facility on West Madison Avenue, from noon to 2PM on Thursday, February 22. The formal dedication ceremony will feature a ribbon-cutting in conjunction with the Arkansas City Area Chamber of Commerce. Representatives of Burns & McDonnell, the engineering firm that designed the facility, and Walters-Morgan Construction, primary contractor for the project, will all be there. Officials of the Kansas Department of Health and Environment also were invited to attend. Burns & McDonnell will conduct a walkthrough of the facility, although some areas will be roped off to the public for safety and security reasons. This is event is free and open to the public. Refreshments will be served following the ceremony. The new $22 million plant, funded by a low-interest KDHE loan, was built at a cost of $4 million under the original budget. In addition, advanced technology will enable the plant to achieve annual operations and maintenance cost savings of 20 percent. The existing water treatment facility has been in operation since the 1950s. Construction began in May 2016 and the facility will begin water production this month.
According to the Cowley County Health Department, there have been 131 positive laboratory reports for influenza received locally as of February 5th. Of those cases, 113 of them… or 86 percent… were with people who have not received a flu vaccine this season, and just 18 cases…. or 14 percent… involved those who had received the flu vaccine. The flu this year, has been widespread among all age groups, but infants, and kids through about 5 years of age, appear to have been most affected. 56 percent of the cases have been women, and 44 percent of the flu cases reported locally have affected men. The data seems to show the effectiveness of the vaccine, with people who received the vaccine not as ill as those who have not. The report also indicates that the flu season has not yet peaked.