Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Help! I've Got An Abandoned Car In My Neighborhood

We heard from two viewers about the trouble they had getting someone's attention when it came to abandoned cars in a neighborhood, or near a workplace.
We're watching our for you .. and we're saving you the steps of trying to find the appropriate agency.

The first step is to determine if it is parked on public property (most streets and neighborhoods), or private property (most vacant lots).

If it's private property, most often you'll need to call the Code Enforcement Department in your city .. Las Vegas, North Las Vegas, Henderson, or if not in a city .. Clark County.

If it's public property, call your local police agency or check with the Constable's Office if you're in the City of Las Vegas or unincorporated Clark County.
**No matter who you call, please know the Make, Model, Color of the vehicle. Get the license plate number and location of the vehicle.

North Las Vegas
(if on public street)
North Las Vegas Police

(if on private property)
North Las Vegas Code Enforcement

Las Vegas
(if on private property--vacant lots, etc.)
Neighborhood Services
702-229-6615 (24 hour number-leave message after hours)

(if on public property--which is most streets)
702-455-8697 (Constable's Office)

(private property)
Code Enforcement

(public property)
Parking Enforcement Hotline
702-267-3950 or 702-267-5099

Clark County
(private property)
Public Response

(public property)
Constable's Office

(on line complaint form for public streets. You'll need to find which "Area Command" you live in within Metro's jurisdiction. All commands have area maps to show you the boundries. Each command has an Abandoned Vehicle Report.) You may also want to call the Constable's Office. It handles the much of the towing duty for Metro after recent changes to existing law.
Las Vegas Township Constable's Office
702-455-8697 (455-TOWS)
Once it receives a complaint of an abandoned vehicle, the Constable's office will send a deputy within 10 days. Already, the Constable's Office says it has towed 1000 abandoned vehicles.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Which Companies Have The Most ID Theft Complaints?

Find out below*

But first … Teenagers are a lot of things. Increasingly they are targets for ID theft. In fact the younger you are, the better victim you make. That’s because if someone has obtained your social security number, you probably won’t know. Older folks will find out someone has used their credit when they try to get a loan and are turned down, or they’ll get a call from a credit card company reporting suspicious activity. But, say, you’re 12 years old. You aren’t getting a car loan and it could be years before you find out there’s a problem.

You can see our story on Kate here.

Anyone with a social security number should be checking their credit report at least once a year. Young kids and teenagers should also do this, as our story illustrated. Just because young kids and teens don't have credit cards, car loans or home mortgages .. doesn't mean someone won't try to use their credit to do so. Half a million teenagers were victims of id theft. Many never thought to check their credit report. They should.

You can get an annual copy of your credit report, for free, from all three credit reporting agencies, once a year. If you're smart, space it out. Get one copy from one of the credit agencies. Wait four months, get another copy of your report from a different credit agency, etc. That way you won’t go a whole year in between reports. If you have them sent to you at home. Don’t leave them lying around. And don’t throw them in the garbage. Shred them!

Here's where you can get your annual credit report.

Here's how to contact each of the individual credit reporting agencies:



*****If you want to see which companies get the most ID Theft/Fraud complaints, read this article.
Companies don't like to divulge this information. It turns out UC Berkeley's Center for Law and Technology, using a Freedom of Information Act request, got a small sampling of information from the Federal Trade Commission, which collects ID Theft/Fraud complaints from companies.

Gregory Cook, Evofi One, Inc. the mortage loan officer who appeared in our story "Kate's Identity Theft" told us about Evofi's new weapon to fight fraud and identity theft. The company just incorporated newly developed software they call FRAUD FREE ZONE. Evofi has spent 3 years developing this software. FRAUD FREE ZONE will analyze every loan application and will prevent most common types of fraud as well as mistakes in loan applications.

Read how the U.S. contradicts itself
over its ID theft advice.

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Drink More Water!

With the temperatures well into the triple digits, I hope you’re drinking lots of water! I came across this article on the Associated Press wire and thought it made an interesting point. I know lots of people who drink soda and assume they’re getting their needed amount of water. Not so ... if you read below.
Just so you know .. I like a soda every so often just like the next guy. But this is something to think about in our hot climate.

The study synopsis:

"Even though these beverages are proclaimed to be mostly water,
in a first
of a kind beverage trial it was demonstrated that they cannot
life. Since the outcome of such trial was unknown and since death
expected in absence of water, no humans or animals took part of it.
Instead, each beverage was given to a house plant, which depends on
for survival as people do. The results were stunningly sad.

(The plant on the left before the study started, the plant on the right was given only regular soda during the study.)

The plants failed to grow and develop, and most of them died.
However, the plant that was given plain water flourished.
(The plants above were given water only. The picture on the left was before the study, the picture on the right after the study was completed.)

"This is a good indicator that people quenching their thirst
beverages other than water might be making a catastrophic mistake
the beverage trial showed that no beverage can be a substitute for
water," said Steve Dimeck, the lead author of the study.
To raise the awareness in people about the benefits of drinking
several dozen studies, research material and clinical trials were
reviewed. There was clear evidence that water indeed can help with
headaches, blood pressure, weight loss, ulcers, mental performance,
constipation, kidney stones, cancer and more.
"This study was not done to discourage people from consuming
modern-day beverages, but to encourage them to drink more water
water, as the beverage trial confirmed, means life," stated Steve

The full study is available by going to this link. However, you have to sign up as a subscriber to read the whole thing.

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Let's Talk About Garbage ...

It's the landfill that keeps on going and going and going. No, you can't take garbage to the Sunrise landfill anymore. But it's still there, and still not permanently closed and capped, as the Environmental Protection Agency says it should be.
Sunrise landfill stopped accepting trash back in 1993. It "closed" in 1995. In 1997 Republic Services decided to buy Silver State Disposal, which included the Sunrise landfill. Now Republic owns it. If you weren't around in 1998, it was a bad flood year in the Las Vegas Valley. So bad, the water forced contaminants from the Sunrise Landfill ... downstream. The EPA came up with a plan to cap and seal and monitor the landfill, so it wouldn't happen again. Republic says the estimate to do that work was originally $36 million. Now, about 10 years later, it could cost another $30 million. So, Republic wants help. The county has been cool to the idea of raising rates to pay for the cleanup. It did agree to extend Republic's franchise agreement in the county until 2035, in exchange for cleaning up the landfill. See our original story on the situation here. Republic says that isn't enough. Republic also gets a rate increase every July 1, based on how much the consumer price index has gone up. That's not enough.

On June 20th, Republic sent a letter to the county saying if it didn't allow for a rate increase, Republic would increase something called "tipping fees" on its own. "Tipping Fees" are what Republic charges to get rid of garbage at its landfills and transfer stations. Commissioner Chris Giunchigliani doesn't think Republic can do that without county approval. So the standoff begins. Commissioners will take up the issue July 15th.

Some other information you might find useful. Republic owns a lot of landfills .. 58 in 21 states, so it should be familiar with the cost of capping and closing landfills. As part of the franchise agreement, Republic has to release its financials to the county every year. In 2007, Republic had revenue of just about $274 million dollars for its operation in Southern Nevada. It shows $34 million dollars in profit.