Keep your guard up, gentle consumers. There are anglers among us.
Here are four recent alerts worth noting:
1. Illinois Attorney General Sues Student Loan Debt Relief Companies
Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan has sued debt relief companies that she says exploit people struggling to repay student loans. Some of the marketing strategies are reminiscent of the way scammers duped vulnerable homeowners facing foreclosure during the mortgage crisis.
The group backing the proposed transportation sales tax is the biggest money-raising operation in the state – but it has yet to air a single TV ad.
Missourians for Safe Transportation and New Jobs, the campaign committee for the sales tax known as Amendment 7, appears to be entering the final weeks of the campaign with more than $2.5 million to spend.
In the midst of his second term, Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon has continued to travel the state to promote his agenda for the state. He has heightened his profile even more in recent days, as he has blasted a tax-cut proposal that the General Assembly has landed on his desk.
But Nixon has effectively dropped one activity that used to take up a lot of his time: campaign fundraising.
State Treasurer Clint Zweifel issued a report aiming to shore up the state’s military installations and contractors.
The report comes several months after Gov. Jay Nixon appointed Zweifel to head the Missouri Military Partnership, an initiative to bolster defense installations throughout the state. Missouri is home to several major military bases, including Whiteman Air Force Base in western Missouri and Fort Leonard Wood in mid-Missouri.
State Auditor Tom Schweich is in an enviable electoral position after Democrat Jay Swearingen dropped out of this year's auditor's race. Democrats do have candidates that could mount credible campaigns. But the question is whether any of them will run.
Missouri residents who have unclaimed property now have the option of donating that property to charity.
State Treasurer Clint Zweifel, who manages the state's unclaimed property division, made that announcement Wednesday at the State Capitol. He says part of the reason for the new option is that some people are reluctant to reclaim property that's worth only small amounts of money.
Students at Roosevelt High School were recognized for their participation in the Regional Bank Financial Scholars program. The students completed a web course that taught the basics of money management, and received certificates in an assembly that included remarks made by State Treasurer Clint Zweifel.
Zweifel, who hails from North County, feels that the program helps to not only lay a financial foundation for the present, but also teaches the benefits of making good choices for the future: