Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Debt collectors and scams

Kansas Attorney General Derek Schmidt released a statement regarding a new scam. According to his statement, a company called, "National Credit Solutions [is] purporting to be a debt collection agency. Most of the consumers who have been contacted have been contacted either by mail or by telephone. National Credit Solutions says it is contacting the consumers to collect a late fee owed by the consumer to Hollywood Video. The organization tells the consumer that the late fee was never paid and that Hollywood Video has turned the account over to National Credit Solutions for collection, and increasing the amount due. The organization then tells the consumer that the amount must be paid immediately or it will be reported on the consumer's credit report. National Credit Solutions often will also attempt to bargain with the consumer to get them to pay on the spot, accepting less than the amount to ensure payment." If you have been contacted, please do not send money, do not let anyone pressure you into sending money, and use the resources in this post:

See Attorney General Derek Schmidt's full statement at:

The Federal Fair Debt Collection Practices Act:

The Federal Trade Commission's (FTC) guide for steps you can take if you have been scammed:

Kansas law KSA 50-623 et seq. regards Kansas consumer protection

Kansas law KSA 50-634 regards remedies and debt collectors

Where to file a consumer protection complaint with the Attorney General:

Where to file a complaint at the FTC:

Consumer Protection video from the FTC:

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Celebrating Kansas in 2011

Although the official day is January 29, 2011, Kansans will be celebrating the 150th anniversary of Kansas statehood throughout 2011. Below is a sampling of sites and articles offering events, dates and places where you can participate in this grass roots fĂȘte of everything Kansas:

Kansas 150 Calendar of Events
(Kansas 150 website)

News About the Kansas Sesquicentennial
(Kansas 150 website)

Kansas 150 Celebrations
(Kansas Travel and Tourism Division)

Kansas Day at the Kansas Historical Society

Kansas 150 Commemoration
(Kansas 150 Advisory Committee)

Kansas Day Presentation: John Carlin
(January 28, 2011, sponsored by the Center for Kansas Studies at Washburn University)

150 Things I Love About Kansas
(Kansas Museum of History Exhibit, Jan 28-Dec 31, 2011)

Kansas Arts Calendar
(Kansas Arts Commission)

Kansas Humanities Council 2011 Calendar

"150 Years of Statehood"
(Wichita Eagle)

"Kansas 150th anniversary events"
(Wichita Eagle)

"Kansas Day 2011"
(Kansas 150 SLK, State Library of Kansas)

Article contact: Bill Sowers
(Check out recent additions to our collection)

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Legislators are back in session

On January 10, the 2011 Legislature returned to Topeka to represent you in the Kansas House of Representatives and Kansas State Senate. As required by the Kansas Constitution, Governor Sam Brownback presented his State of the State speech in which he laid out his goals for the state and the current status of state functions to the legislature.

Previous Governors' State of the State addresses and other messages can be found online at:

Section of the Kansas Constitution requiring the Governor to deliver a message to the legislature:

The Governor is also required to present a budget plan for the state:

The following are recommendations to communicate with your elected officials:

Find your legislators' contact information at:

Find out who your state legislators are by entering your address at:

Click on either House or Senate and then on the member's name. This will bring up a picture and the contact information for your legislator-
OR you can call the Legislative Hotline, a service of the State Library, to leave a message for your legislator at 1-800-432-3924.

Talk to your legislators about what concerns you:
1. When emailing or writing a letter to your legislator, address him or her as Honorable Representative or Honorable Senator
2. Be sure to include how your concern affects people in your area
3. Offer background information to support your argument
4. Offer to testify to your argument

Find out more about your legislators:
Histories of elected officials:
Legislators Past and Present:

Call the Legislative Hotline with any questions regarding Kansas government, the status of bills going through session, bill numbers for certain policy issues, legislative history assistance, or how to contact your legislator: 1-800-432-3924.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011


Bullying has come into the national spotlight within the past year due to some tragic cases primarily involving young adults. At the state level there are several organizations and agencies which offer information and resources for schools, parents, children and adults on signs of bullying and how to deal with it. Below are some links to resources with an emphasis on Kansas information.


Kansas Bullying Prevention
Kansas State Department of Education
(Links, Instate resources and organizations, Kansas Safe Schools Hotline, etc)

Bullying Prevention
(Kansas Safe Schools Resource Center)

Kansas Bullying Prevention Program

Definitions and Characteristics of Bullying

Sample Bullying Prevention Program

Sample Bullying Prevention Policies

(Kansas State Dept of Education)

Cyber Bullying
(Net Safe Kansas)

(Resources provided by Axe Library, Pittsburg State University)

Kansas Children's Service League

Kansas Suicide & Crisis Hotline

Stop Bullying Now
(U.S. Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA))

Bully Police USA

Safe & Civil Schools

National Crime Prevention Council
(Search results for "bullying")


Workplace Bullying Institute
(Online brochures offered by the Institute)

Workplace Bullying

Workplace Mobbing

Workplace Bullying: What Everyone Needs to Know
(Washington State publication with good, general information)


U.S Department of Education

Bullies Booklist for Teens
(Grand Rapids Public Library)

Bullying: A Fiction and Nonfiction Resource Guide

(Holdings at the State Library of Kansas, Washburn University, Kansas State Historical Society, Kansas Supreme Court libraries)

Article contact: Bill Sowers
(Check out recent additions to our collection)