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News from DCA - Current Press Releases

Thursday, April 10, 2008
NEW YORK CITY’S DEPARTMENT OF CONSUMER AFFAIRS CHARGES PARTY CITY WITH REPEATEDLY DISPLAYING AND SELLING ILLEGAL FAKE GUNS
The New York City Department of Consumer Affairs (DCA) today announced its prosecution of the Party City Corporation, charging the company with continuing to display and sell life-like illegal fake guns, violating both city law and a prior settlement agreement the company reached with DCA in 2003. DCA charged Party City with more than 800 counts of violating the law, which could total more than $800,000 in fines.




Thursday, April 3, 2008
NEW YORK CITY’S DEPARTMENT OF CONSUMER AFFAIRS LAUNCHES IN-DEPTH INVESTIGATION OF LIFELOCK, INC. FOR MISREPRESENTING ITS IDENTITY THEFT PREVENTION PRODUCTS TO NEW YORK CITY CONSUMERS
The New York City Department of Consumer Affairs (DCA) today launched an in-depth investigation of LifeLock, Inc. – the self-proclaimed “industry leader” in the identity theft protection industry – for its deceptive print and Web site advertisements which can lead consumers to believe falsely that they are insured against any identity theft that takes place while they are enrolled, that the company will reimburse money lost as a result of identity theft, and that the company will spend up to $1 million each time a LifeLock customer is a victim of identity theft.




Tuesday, March 18, 2008
Mayor Bloomberg and San Francisco Mayor Newsom Launch the Cities for Financial Empowerment Coalition
Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg and San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom today announced the launch of Cities of Financial Empowerment (CFE), a coalition of City governments seeking to address and expand the role of municipal government in improving the financial health and security of residents with low and moderate incomes. The CFE Coalition will be co-chaired by the City of New York led by Consumer Affairs Commissioner Jonathan Mintz and the City of San Francisco led by Treasurer José Cisneros.
PRESS RELEASE # 092-08




Thursday, March 6, 2008
DEPARTMENT OF CONSUMER AFFAIRS NAMES 29 TO NEWLY CREATED ADVISORY COUNCIL FOR ITS OFFICE OF FINANCIAL EMPOWERMENT (OFE)
The Department of Consumer Affairs’ (DCA) Office of Financial Empowerment (OFE) named 29 outstanding national and New York leaders to its newly created OFE Advisory Council. The Office of Financial Empowerment is the first local government initiative in the nation aimed expressly at educating, empowering, and protecting those with low incomes so they can build assets and make the most of their financial resources. OFE, the first program to be implemented under the Center for Economic Opportunity, is part of Mayor Bloomberg’s aggressive efforts to fight poverty in New York City. DCA Commissioner Jonathan Mintz created the Advisory Council to help shape OFE’s agenda as it continues its work to increase financial literacy and asset building opportunities for New Yorkers with low incomes.




Tuesday, March 4, 2008
DEPARTMENT OF CONSUMER AFFAIRS SECURES MORE THAN $5 MILLION IN RESTITUTION – A 47 PERCENT INCREASE – FOR INDIVIDUAL NEW YORKERS WITH COMPLAINTS IN 2007
The Department of Consumer Affairs (DCA) today announced the agency has secured a total of $5.3 million in restitution for New Yorkers who filed valid consumer complaints. The record amount of restitution, which increased 47 percent over the past year, was secured through DCA’s mediation and enforcement efforts. The Department received and investigated more than 6,000 consumer complaints in Fiscal Year 2007 – an increase of more than 40 percent from 2004 – against businesses that they believe have unfairly taken advantage of them or have misled them. Consumers who filed complaints against home improvement contractors, the agency’s top complaint category in FY ‘07, received $2.4 million restitution successfully secured by DCA.




Monday, February 25, 2008
Aspen Institute, City Agencies and Local Credit Union to Highlight Savings Initiatives and Assistance Available to New Yorkers
The Commissioners of two New York City agencies and the leaders of an Upper Manhattan credit union and national think tank today highlighted savings initiatives and assistance available to New Yorkers in an effort to help increase the savings rate.




Thursday, February 21, 2008
NEW YORK CITY DEPARTMENT OF CONSUMER AFFAIRS ANNOUNCES CITYWIDE ENFORCEMENT SWEEP OF INCOME TAX PREPARERS
Department of Consumer Affairs (DCA) Commissioner Jonathan Mintz today announced the results of the Department’s comprehensive investigation into predatory and illegal practices by the income tax preparation industry. During the first six weeks of the sweep, the Department inspected more than 300 businesses, issuing more than 500 violations to preparers that placed misleading or illegal advertisements in newspapers, misrepresented Refund Anticipation Loans (RALs) to their clients, as well as other violations.




Thursday, February 7, 2008
New York City Department of Consumer Affairs Holds Public Hearing to Investigate Secondhand Auto Dealer Practices in New York City
The Department of Consumer Affairs held an exploratory public hearing today, gathering crucial testimony from consumers, industry leaders and financial experts, as part of its ongoing investigation into deceptive and predatory tactics within the secondhand auto dealer industry.




Wednesday, January 23, 2008
NEW YORK CITY KICKS OFF TAX SEASON WITH THE 6th ANNUAL EARNED INCOME TAX CREDIT (EITC) CAMPAIGN
Deputy Mayor Linda Gibbs, Department of Consumer Affairs (DCA) Commissioner Jonathan Mintz, Department of Information Technology and Telecommunications (DoITT) Commissioner Paul Cosgrave and the Mayor’s Office of Immigrant Affairs Commissioner Dr. Guillermo Linares today kicked off the 6th Annual New York City Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) Coalition Campaign to help working families and individuals with low incomes claim up to $6,000 when filing their taxes. Representatives from the New York City EITC Coalition – the most comprehensive effort in the nation including the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), leading nonprofit organizations and private partners – were all on hand for the announcement at the 311 Customer Service Center in Lower Manhattan.




Tuesday, January 22, 2008
Mayor Bloomberg, Commissioner Mintz and Commissioner Cosgrave Roll Out Two New Technology Applications to Slash Government Red Tape, As Promised in 2008 State of the City Address
Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg, Department of Consumer Affairs (DCA) Commissioner Jonathan Mintz and Department of Information Technology and Telecommunications (DOITT) Commissioner Paul J. Cosgrave today rolled out two new technological initiatives to improve the City's customer service, slash government red tape and ease the regulatory burden on small business owners in New York City - delivering the first of a series of initiatives that the Mayor promised New Yorkers in his 2008 State of the City address on Thursday.
PRESS RELEASE # 022-08



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