Loading
Search
NEWS STORIES

Utility bills scam hitting customers who might be behind on paymentsSubmitted: 04/16/2013

Lane Kimble
Managing Editor/Anchor
lkimble@wjfw.com


RHINELANDER - A seemingly endless winter made for a tough year on utility bills. Some people are behind on payments and that could mean your provider shuts off services starting this week.

The latest scam is taking advantage of customers who find themselves stuck in that position.

Wisconsin Public Service customers say someone will call claiming to be from the company. They'll request money for unpaid accounts, claiming services will be shut down if you don't pay.

The scammer will suggest you buy a prepaid debit card or arrange for a cash pickup. WPS Community Relations Leader Leah Van Zile says those should be warning signs.

"They would not be offended at all if somebody says, 'You know, I'm not sure about this, I'm going to call back in,'" Van Zile said. "It's just a part of safety nowadays in the world that we operate."

What about if you actually are behind on your bill? Van Zile says there are still options to keep your lights and heat going.

All it takes is a phone call or a click.

"There may still be some dollars available for energy assistance, so if some of those folks haven't taken advantage of that program and they are income eligible, we really encourage them to contact the social services office for their county and see if there's some crisis dollars available," Van Zile said.

If you do think a scammer has called you, make sure to write down as much information about the caller as possible.

That includes the date and time, phone number and any description of the caller you can gather.

We have a link to the Wisconsin Home Energy Assistance Program below.

Related Weblinks:
Wisconsin Home Energy Assistance Program

Text Size: + Increase | Decrease -
| Print Story | Email Story
Sponsored in part by HodagSports.com





 IN OTHER NEWS

Play Video

BOULDER JUNCTION - Pilots find very little room for error when they make a landing.  Wings, flaps, and landing gear all need to work properly.  Then there's the runway itself, which needs to be flat and smooth.

So, when pilots found ruts and divots torn into the grass runway at Boulder Junction's airport, folks were more than upset--they were worried about safe landings.  Airfield president Jeff Long thinks someone used a pickup truck to do the damage.  It happened right before the airfield's busiest weekend of the year, the Musky Day fly-in.

+ Read More

RHINELANDER - The City of Rhinelander and Oneida County will consider borrowing $15 million to help develop a manufacturer in Rhinelander, according to an Oneida County Economic Development Corporation release Tuesday.

The money would help Rhinelander Coated Products start work inside the former Printpack building on Kemp Street.

+ Read More

EAGLE RIVER - A suit filed in Vilas County may determine how much you pay for a gallon of gas.

Krist Oil Company filed a lawsuit Monday in Vilas County Circuit Court challenging Wisconsin's minimum markup law on gasoline.

+ Read More

KNOWLTON - When you think of Wisconsin, you probably think of the Packers, dairy, and beer. One of the quintessential things that makes this state great is its cheese, and you'll find no shortage of that in northcentral Wisconsin. The largest family-owned cheese factory in the state is right in our own backyard, and it continues to push its limits in the industry.

+ Read More

MADISON - New state regulations designed to retain teachers are going into effect.

The package was published Tuesday. The provisions allow retired teachers or teachers nearing retirement to apply for a nonrenewable five-year license without submitting a professional development plan. They also increase the time that short-term substitute teachers can serve in the same assignment from 20 days to 45 days.

+ Read More

Play Video

WAUSAU - School is the way to success, but with that path comes a huge price tag. Gov. Scott Walker stopped by Northcentral Technical College in Wausau to discuss student debt.

At the conference Walker put an emphasis on the importance of financial literacy.

The President of NTC,  Dr. Lori Weyers, said, "All of the students at NTC do go through financial literacy information, and what I think the governor is trying to do is make sure we do that will all students and parents so they understand that."



+ Read More

Play Video

THREE LAKES - Pollinators play an essential role in the growth of plants, and it's not just bees that help pollinate.

Butterflies, bats, and even mosquitoes are pollinators, but those populations have been in decline in recent years.

"Across the U.S., pollinators have been seeing big declines," said Oneida County Conservationist Michele Sadauskas. "We've been hearing more and more about our honeybee pollinations. The monarch populations have had dramatic decreases. So we're seeing it across the board."

+ Read More
+ More General News
Search: 




Click Here