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News from DCA - Current Press Releases

Thursday, December 29, 2011
DEPARTMENT OF CONSUMER AFFAIRS COMMISSIONER JONATHAN MINTZ OFFERS NEW YEAR’S RESOLUTIONS TO HELP NEW YORKERS PROTECT THEIR MONEY IN 2012
Want to start the New Year off right? Will 2012 be the year that you get your finances in order? Department of Consumer Affairs Commissioner (DCA) Jonathan Mintz provides tips that can help you save money and become an educated consumer in 2012.




Thursday, December 22, 2011
DEPARTMENT OF CONSUMER AFFAIRS COMMISSIONER MINTZ ANNOUNCES RESULTS OF HOLIDAY GOLD BUYING SWEEP
Department of Consumer Affairs (DCA) Commissioner Jonathan Mintz today announced that undercover investigations revealed deceptive weighing practices and widely variable pricing valuations of the same pieces of gold. They also exposed widespread predatory practices that included not separating gold pieces when weighing, not testing for accurate karat rate and undervaluing of gold. Using three pieces of gold jewelry that were independently appraised at $590, undercover inspections resulted in offers that ranged from $175 to $450. In addition, the business’ daily rate of gold was often not disclosed and close to 70 percent of the time all three pieces were not separated by karat when weighed.




Monday, December 12, 2011
DEPARTMENT OF CONSUMER AFFAIRS AND CITY UNIVERSITY OF NEW YORK CELEBRATE THE FIRST GRADUATING CLASS OF THEIR NEW COURSE IN FINANCIAL COUNSELING
Department of Consumer Affairs (DCA) Commissioner Jonathan Mintz and City University of New York (CUNY) Senior Vice Chancellor for University Relations and Secretary of the Board of Trustees Jay Hershenson today celebrate the final class of Consumer and Personal Finance, a professional training course designed to prepare students to understand the fundamentals of managing personal finances and how to impart this financial education and practices to their clients. To ensure the quality and consistency of services at the City’s Financial Empowerment Centers, DCA developed a formal training program with CUNY in 2009. This course is now available as a full-semester, three-credit course through CUNY’s School of Professional Studies. Students who can benefit from the course include nonprofit financial education providers and staff in social service organizations serving youth, immigrants and adults with low incomes.




Wednesday, December 7, 2011
DEPARTMENT OF CONSUMER AFFAIRS INTEGRATES FINANCIAL EMPOWERMENT INTO PUBLIC PROGRAMS AND DISCOVERS A “SUPERVITAMIN” EFFECT
The Department of Consumer Affairs’ (DCA) Office of Financial Empowerment today released Municipal Financial Empowerment: A Supervitamin for Public Programs. The report is the first in a series that documents early signs of successful impact of integrating financial empowerment and asset building strategies into core social services such as workforce development, homelessness prevention, domestic violence interventions, adult education, welfare to work, community courts, and more. The report outlines the theory, early successes, lessons learned, and longer term implications for better and less expensive outcomes in social services as a result of integrated financial empowerment “supervitamins.”




Monday, November 21, 2011
Downtown Alliance and Department of Consumer Affairs Kick Off 2011 Holiday Shopping Season in Lower Manhattan
Department of Consumer Affairs (DCA) Commissioner Jonathan Mintz, Alliance for Downtown New York President Elizabeth H. Berger, and J & R Chief Executive Officer Rachelle Friedman today officially kicked off the 2011 Holiday Shopping season in Lower Manhattan.




Thursday, November 17, 2011
DCA COMMISSIONER MINTZ ANNOUNCES RESULTS OF NEW YORK CITY AIRLINE SCALES ENFORCEMENT SWEEP TO PROTECT HOLIDAY TRAVELLERS FROM OVERCHARGES
Department of Consumer Affairs (DCA) Commissioner Jonathan Mintz today announced results of the Department’s three-week enforcement sweep of every airline luggage scale used at John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK) and LaGuardia Airport (LGA) to protect holiday travelers from luggage overcharges. DCA found 90 percent compliance in its initial inspections and issued 80 Stop-Use Orders to airlines for failing scales. Upon re-inspection of failing scales after their recalibration by the airlines, overall compliance rose to over 98 percent.




Wednesday, November 16, 2011
CITY OFFICIALS & ELECTED OFFICIALS LAUNCH “PROTECT YOUR MONEY: KNOW BEFORE YOU ENROLL,” A TESTIMONIAL AD CAMPAIGN ADVISING NEW YORKERS ABOUT PREDATORY SCHOOL SCAMS
Department of Consumer Affairs (DCA) Commissioner Jonathan Mintz, New York State Education Commissioner John B. King, Jr., New York State Senator Kenneth P. LaValle, New York State Assembly Member Deborah J. Glick, New York City Department of Education (DOE) Chancellor Dennis M. Walcott, NYC Service Chief Service Officer Diahann Billings-Burford, Mayor’s Office of Adult Education Executive Director Tara Colton and Center for Economic Opportunity (CEO) Executive Director Veronica M. White today announced the launch of the Protect Your Money: Know Before You Enroll campaign. This new campaign will educate New Yorkers about selecting a school or training program, advise them to be careful of taking on a large amount of school debt and encourage anyone who has had a negative experience to file a complaint by calling 311 or visiting nyc.gov.




Wednesday, November 9, 2011
SAFE AND AFFORDABLE BANKING BEGINS AT HOME: NEW YORK CITY CONNECTS EMPLOYEES TO FREE CHECKING ACCOUNTS
The Department of Consumer Affairs (DCA), Office of Payroll Administration (OPA) and Mayor’s Office of Operations (OPS) today announced NYC Direct Deposit, a program to help thousands of City employees get their pay safer, cheaper and easier than ever before. With NYC Direct Deposit, New York City employees and other recipients of City payments can open free checking accounts and enroll in direct deposit in a few quick steps. The program is offered at Banco Popular, Carver Federal Savings Bank, Citibank, Flushing Bank, Habib American Bank, Neighborhood Trust Federal Credit Union and Sterling National Bank.




Wednesday, November 2, 2011
DEPARTMENT OF CONSUMER AFFAIRS ORDERS TALENT AGENCY, OWNER TO PAY $908K IN FINES FOR DECEPTIVE PRACTICES
The Department of Consumer Affairs today announced that in response to charges it brought, a judge ordered WMT Model & Talent Network Development, Ltd. (224 West 35th Street, Manhattan) to pay $908,400 in fines to the City after finding that it was illegally advertising services that it did not provide, charging customers for photography services as a precondition for securing jobs that did not exist, and operating as an unlicensed employment agency.




Friday, October 21, 2011
DEPARTMENT OF CONSUMER AFFAIRS GOES DOOR-TO-DOOR IN 29 COMMUNITIES CITYWIDE TO EDUCATE LOCAL BUSINESSES WITHOUT ISSUING VIOLATIONS
New York City Department of Consumer Affairs (DCA) today conducted its Ninth Annual Business Education Day. Throughout the day, more than 100 DCA staff, almost a dozen elected officials, and representatives from other City agencies, business improvement districts, and local community associations took to the streets in all five boroughs to educate businesses about key consumer protection laws and licensing requirements—without issuing violations.



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