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Hagan proposing to regulate locksmiths in Hillsborough



If you're going to create a dummy address for your business, it's probably best to make sure you haven't chosen the actual home of an elected official.

Hillsborough County Commission Chairman Ken Hagan says he has now received several mail pieces for a locksmith business, addressed to his house. He did some checking and learned that is not uncommon for scamster locksmiths to set up several dummy companies in a community then advertise the different names on the Internet The idea is: You're locked out of your car, so you look up a phone number for the nearest locksmith.

The county's Consumer Protection office was already looking into it and was finding in some cases that the actual phone calls for service were getting answered from places outside the county, Hagan said. What's more, locksmiths typically cite one rate on the phone or in their advertized. But after unlocking the door were charging more, sometimes much more. You don't pay, you don't get in.

So Hagan will propose Wednesday that the county look at if and how other counties have sought to regulate the industry and come up with ideas to enact some guidelines in Hillsborough County including, possibly, minimum standards such as passage of a criminal background check. He said his initial investigation has found that the profession is largely unregulated by the state.

[Last modified: Tuesday, April 16, 2013 5:31pm]


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