Meridian, Miss. John O'Hara, chief executive officer for Mississippi's Better Business Bureau, is warning locals about a scam that has affected people throughout the twin state area.
The scam involves people who drive up to residents' houses and offer to pour 'extra' asphalt or concrete which they have for a very low price. The problem is that they start the work, but don't finish it.
"In our research of working with the Better Business Bureau in Alabama, we did find out that there's a similar company name that has done this in Bessemer, Alabama. So, they are running this on the corridor on I-20," said O'Hara.
"At the area that I went to yesterday there were weeds growing up through it; it was only about one inch thick," said O'Hara. "One person has such a mess that just them driving their cars on it has created just pieces of asphalt everywhere. So, now they have to pay someone to clean it up."
In fact, O'Hara says residents in one part of the Jackson Metro area have been duped by the con-artists out of almost $50,000.
"They're not registered with the Board of Contractors or the Better Business Bureau," O'Hara said. "So, we're hoping if people hear of them, or see them, that they contact us because you should always be leery of people just showing up at your house."
Meanwhile, exactly one week after the kickoff for open enrollment for the nation's new Affordable Healthcare law, O'Hara says scam artists are trying to steal people's identities.
"There are navigators that are associated with the government to do the Affordable Care Act, and help people find insurance, but they're not charging," said O'Hara. "There also is no Medicaid or Medicare card that you need to sign up for where they're contacting people saying I need your personal information."
O'Hara advises anyone with questions about a business to get contact information for it, and call the Better Business Bureau to find out whether it's legitimate. The number is 1-800-987-8280.