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Wednesday, July 17, 2024

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Trump running mate Vance to deliver 'the most important speech' of his career at Republican convention tonight; Alabama group receives grant to boost FAFSA submissions; Bilingual, multicultural staff needed for NJ addiction treatment; Toledo plant to manufacture EVs with federal funding.

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The Republican National Convention connects crime to migration. Kari Lake and delegates from Texas, Florida, and California talk about border issues. Desantis pokes fun at President Biden and Nikki Haley gives the night's big speech.

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It's grass-cutting season and with it, rural lawn mower races, Montana's drive-thru blood project is easing shortages, rural Americans spend more on food when transportation costs are tallied and a lack of good childcare is thwarting rural business owners.

Watchdog hopes MN flood victims keep shady contractors at bay

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Tuesday, June 25, 2024   

Communities across Minnesota, especially in its southern half, have been responding to flood emergencies, and consumer protection groups are urging affected property owners to gain knowledge to avoid being swindled.

Gov. Tim Walz and other leaders are assessing the scope of the damage, with calls for a special legislative session to approve disaster aid.

Bao Vang, vice president of communications for the Better Business Bureau of Minnesota and North Dakota, recommended homeowners facing restoration work from a flooded basement to not look past red flags in hiring a contractor. Repair scams are often associated with roof and siding damage after a thunderstorm but Vang said fraudsters can prey on flood victims, too.

"They're offering quick fixes, those big promises that they do not intend to keep," Vang explained.

She noted not all storm chasing contractors are scammers. Some may just lack the proper licensing for the area. Still, Vang pointed out your best bet is to check for locally based, accredited contractors, either through municipal government websites, the state Department of Labor and Industry, or BBB.org. Other tips include avoiding high-pressure sales tactics or requests for full payments up front.

With sections of many communities washed out by rising waters, local contracts will likely be fielding a lot of calls. Vang cautioned it does not mean you should get desperate. Instead, organizations such as the Better Business Bureau can help you fan out your search.

"We can help you look online, find reputable companies," Vang explained. "Those that have been doing great business with other customers."

Her organization has staff members who can talk you through steps over the phone. The calls are taken during normal business hours. In preparing to seek assistance, homeowners also are urged to contact their insurance company first and confirm what their policy covers, along with the filing requirements.


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Workers can file safety or heat-related complaints at the Cal/OSHA office nearest their work site or by calling 866-924-9757. (Sculpies/Adobe Stock)

Health and Wellness

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California has shattered heat records left and right this month and temperatures are forecast to be 10 degrees above normal this weekend, so the …


Environment

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Ohio will receive more than $32 million in federal funding to help revive auto manufacturing and jobs in the state, specifically electric vehicle …

Environment

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A court is soon expected to decide a Wyoming case between hunters and landowners which could affect public land access. When a group from Missouri …


Experts say addiction treatment outcomes are much better when a health care provider speaks the language and understands the culture of the patient. (Adobe Stock)

Health and Wellness

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More than 85,000 people are admitted each year in New Jersey to treatment programs for alcohol and drug addiction, and experts say language can be a …

Environment

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Massachusetts will receive close to $1 billion in federal funding to replace the Cape Cod bridges. Lawmakers said it is the largest single bridge …

Researchers said children who live in poverty lose an additional two months of reading skills over the summer, with a lack of proper nutrition serving as a key factor. (Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

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Some North Dakota leaders believe healthy food is part of what is needed to help all kids achieve better outcomes and they hope low-income families si…

Health and Wellness

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In the past year, the Colorado AgrAbility Project added four behavioral health specialists to help the state's agricultural producers, workers and …

Social Issues

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The nonprofit Este Poder has a goal of helping more young people of color in rural east Texas exercise their right to vote. The organization holds …

 

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