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Offers of free energy audits and government rebates may be a scam


Offers of free energy audits may be a scam

Last year, Pinellas County residents received unsolicited offers that appeared to be from local power companies and promised lower utility bills and government rebates. The offers were fraudulent. The scam recently received national attention in a report by the North American Consumer Protection Investigators and highlights the need for consumer awareness and caution. Douglas Templeton, chief investigator for the county's Department of Justice and Consumer Services, warns that residents should be alert for offers of free energy audits, significant utility savings and federal government rebates. "Always be alert when approached by unsolicited salesmen," Templeton said. "Offers of large energy savings or government rebates are danger signs." Consumers should never sign agreements or contracts without documentation and checking to make sure the service provider is licensed through the Pinellas County Construction Licensing Board. Contractors offering solar energy improvements are required to have specific licenses for this service in Florida.


Library seeks help for berm planting

The Clearwater East Library, 2251 Drew St., in cooperation with the Clearwater Parks and Recreation Department, is seeking volunteers to assist with an Oct. 6 groundcover planting on the library's earthen berm that abuts the building. The planting will be from 9 a.m. to noon, weather permitting. Volunteers, who will meet in the east parking lot of the library, should wear old clothes, sturdy shoes and bring work gloves, if they have a pair. Other tools, materials, and gloves for those without them, will be provided. In the event of inclement weather, the rain date will be Oct. 13. For information, please call assistant director Jen Obermaier at the Clearwater Library at (727) 562-4970.

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Visual artists to display their work

The Professional Association of Visual Artists will presents its Annual Members Exhibit through Oct. 28 at the Leepa-Rattner Museum of Art, 600 Klosterman Road. The exhibit includes two-dimensional and three-dimensional works from many Florida artists. All work is available for purchase. Exhibit hours are 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday, Wednesday and Saturday; 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Thursday; 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Friday; and 1 to 5 p.m. Sunday. Visit for information.

Offers of free energy audits and government rebates may be a scam 09/22/12 [Last modified: Saturday, September 22, 2012 2:04pm]
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