Tuesday, February 21, 2006

Juno - My Complaint

I used Juno service from about April 2004 to November 2005. Previous to that I had used America Online. When I left America Online, after two years of service, they really gave me a difficult time in canceling my account. I was offered low rate accounts, free e-mail upgrades, and the like. I refused them all and ended the relationship with no-harm and no-foul. Yet, in November 2005 I saw a lawsuit against America Online detailing how some customers did not get off as easy as I did. I had this in mind when I went to cancel my Juno subscription. So, in November I was assured that my account would be canceled and that I would never see another charge from Juno again. I even received a cancellation confirmation number to boot. Heck, I even joked with the representative about the problems AOL was having. Well, a few days later Juno charged my account. I didn't notice it that month, but then in December they did it again. I was not happy. I called the customer service line and after berating a man for 10 minutes was transferred to the correct department that handled 'cancellations' I talked to a woman about my problem. She had notes that stated I was canceling Juno but said that no cancellation ever took place. I was not happy. I advised this Juno employee to credit my account ASAP. In three days the two charges were back in my account and I advised the Juno employee "you guys can't charge people when they cancel your service!" Now it's February. I looked on my bank statement today and I see a charge in January and February for a service I cancelled in November. I called and again berated the Juno team about their lack of service and 'deceptive trade practices' - i.e. saying 'your account is cancelled and here is your cancellation number' without actually cancelling the account!! This time I had it and contacted the Rhode Island Attorney General's office. I plan to take this as far as it needs to go because, yeah they'll give me my money back, but how many other people have suffered through what I've gone through. I shouldn't have to make three calls, and get two credits to my bank account in order to cancel my account. The kicker, the 'manager' refused to e-mail me the cancellation confirmation number. She would only e-mail it to the 'cancelled' juno e-mail. I said, "uh, if the account is cancelled, isn't the e-mail address dead?" She replied, "It's not our company policy to e-mail customers at any other location other than their juno account." Stay tuned for the next installment of this case. Juno has no right to do business like this, and I'm not standing for it. I hope, and based upon initial talks with the AG's office things look good, that I can help put a stop to this practice and ensure that others don't find themselves on the phone with people who seem to be intentionally not cancelling their account.

Friday, February 03, 2006

Taxpayer Relief Act of 2006 aka Election-year hoax?

I sent this to Katherin Gregg who covers the General Assembly for the ProJo in re: the Taxpayer Relief Act of 2006. Admittedly, this was just my initial reaction to it. I hope we look back this time next year and see that I was wickedly wrong. But, I don't think so:

Hi Katherine, The reforms proposed by the House, while stirring goose-bumps over the prospect of burgeoning wallets, seems to be nothing more than an election year ploy to help elect Charlie Fogarty, maintain the Democratic stranglehold in the House, and give the RI House Dems the appearance of being cost cutting super-heroes. Well, I'm not fooled and I doubt anyone else in Rhode Island is either. I'd be willing to bet a large some of money (perhaps even the anticipated savings from these reforms) that of the proposed 'relief' bills, the only things that pass are the one/two day sales tax holiday and/or the commission to study state sales tax. In any event, these reforms reek with a politically driven stench. The system needs reform, but you can't cut taxes without so much as glancing at current spending levels. And in your column as well as the House press release covering the same, no Democratic leader supporting these reforms mentioned word one about social services, deficits, and the like. The Rhode Island taxpayer desperately needs relief, but we don't need cheap tricks.
Here's the Press Release from the RI House Leaders: (Connection Broken. Link Posted Later) The story in the Providence Journal: Link So what do you think about these proposed relief efforts to put cash back into our pockets?

Wednesday, February 01, 2006

Major Tax Reform....or Propoganda?

Perhaps seeking to trump the Governor's budget, leaders of the RI House of Representatives will be introducing 'tax reform' tomorrow at the State House.

House leaders to unveil major tax reform legislation House of Representatives leaders will hold a news conference tomorrow to unveil a major package of legislation aimed at making significant, wide-ranging reforms to Rhode Island’s tax structure.The event will take place Thursday, February 2, at 3:30 p.m. in Room 35 of the State House.
Anyone want to take bets that it isn't that 'major'?

Little Compton School Committee Exemption

Representative John Loughlin, today introduced legislation that would exempt the Little Compton School Committee from publishing its meetings on the Secretary of State's website as every other public body in the state of rhode island now does. Instead of electronically filing with the Secretary of State, Little Compton would be able to publish the notice in a local newspaper. I've posted about the public meetings at the Secretary of State's office before noting that it truly gives the average citizen a look inside of what's going on around the state. By reversing course for one school school committe, it undermines the principle reason for electronic filing. I can't say I know the motivation behind this move, but it does not seem very conducive to keeping citizens informed.