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Moving company mailed refund to previous address

Last September I made a telephone contract with the manager of AABCO Moving Co. in St. Petersburg to have one room of furniture moved from Washington, D.C., to St. Petersburg on Sept. 27. The cost was to be $525. I mailed them a deposit of $250.

They failed to appear on Sept. 27, claiming truck problems. Two more moving dates were scheduled, but they did not show up on either date or have credible explanations.

When I canceled the contract on Oct. 9, the manager assured me there would be no problem sending me a refund.

Since then, I have made numerous phone calls and sent a certified letter. The only response I got was a release form they want me to sign before I receive a refund.

After having such a poor relationship with this company, I am reluctant to sign unless I receive my refund first. I wrote them to that effect but to date have not received either an answer or a refund.

I hope you can help me.

Emily Hickey

Response: Although you wrote to Sunshine Movers in September and again in November from your St. Petersburg address, and it was clear you were moving from Washington, D.C., to St. Petersburg, for some reason, according to Sunshine Movers, a check was sent to you Dec. 10 at your Washington, D.C., address (and then, for some reason, was never forwarded).

They tell us that a replacement check has been mailed to your St. Petersburg address.

1924 stock likely

fizzled with boom

I enjoy your column and learn from it. Would you be able to find out what happened to Page Brothers Real Estate Developers and also a development called Dunnellon Garden Homes?

My 85-year-old mother has stock certificates from both these companies dated 1924, and we are curious about their possible value.

Marlys Girard

Response: We could find nothing listed in the Corporate Division of the Secretary of State's office, even though their records go back that far.

We think you will find your answer in Walter Fuller's St. Petersburg And Its People. Fuller talks about the land boom that began in 1921, reached its height around 1925 and fizzled out in 1928. At the height of the boom, real estate speculators were buying land at $1,000 an acre and reselling it for three times that amount in a matter of days or even hours. Developments sprang up complete with paved streets, lights and utilities. Lots were sold and resold, but no houses built. When the boom busted, land couldn't be given away.

Camera was lost, but Alamo will send refund

While on a trip out west, I left my two-year-old, 35mm, Pentax camera in a carrying case on the floor of an Alamo rental car in Salt Lake City. Within a few minutes of leaving the rental car business, I realized what I had done.

The airport shuttle I was on radioed back, and my husband phoned from the airport, but the camera was not located.

We phoned again and wrote while on our trip but received no reply. When we got home, we wrote the police in Salt Lake City.

In mid-November, we got a letter from the police stating my camera had been located and sent to our Florida address. Since we weren't there, it was returned to Salt Lake City and would be sent to our West Virginia address.

The camera never has arrived, and our calls and letters to the Alamo dealership in Salt Lake City get no response.

Can you help?

A.M. Kail

Response: Our inquiry was answered by Alamo customer relations supervisor Scott Andrews in Fort Lauderdale. He says he has contacted the Salt Lake City office, and your camera has not been found.

Ordinarily Alamo does not assume responsibility for lost personal belongings. However, because of concern over the "implications" of your case, he has asked Salt Lake City to investigate the matter and was sending you a check for $206 to reimburse you for your loss.

Reaction

You can close my file. Bay Area Builders did refund $300 of my money.

It was a rather dear lesson to learn. I hope I use my brain from now on.

You do a lot of good, and I'm sure what you did helped a lot, so I am grateful.

Bernice Staubus

If you have a question for Action, or your own attempts to resolve a consumer complaint have failed, write: Times Action, c/o the City Times, P.O. Box 1121, St. Petersburg 33731, or call your Action number, 893-8171, to leave a recorded request for Action.

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