City of Manzanita took steps to deter scammers,
Salem – As storm season approaches, Oregonians who sustain
property damage should remember to check the licenses of any construction
workers with the Construction Contractors Board (CCB).
Homeowners can look up a contractor by visiting the CCB
website at www.oregon.gov/ccb and
entering a license number or name in the orange “Search” feature. Verify that
the license is “active” and that the name on the license matches the contractor
Storms or disasters that cause widespread property damage
can attract con artists. They often urge people to start repairs immediately
when homeowners should always contact their insurance agent before hiring a
contractor. Beware of people who encourage you to spend large amounts of money
on “temporary repairs.”
The tornado that swept through Manzanita last month is the
type of disaster that attracts con artists. However, officials in Manzanita deter
problems by routinely verifying CCB licenses of contractors when they seek required
city permits to work. Additionally, City Manager Jerald Taylor said the city’s
inspector keeps a close eye on projects to ensure construction businesses are
The CCB also sent investigators to the north Oregon coast
several times following the tornado.
“Our investigators checked the area several times following
the tornado and were impressed that the community took precautions to keep out
scammers and unlicensed contractors,” Enforcement Manager Stan Jessup said.
Further north, in Clatsop County, investigators last week visited
74 jobsites and turned up 14 suspected violations of contracting law. The
violations generally involved:
- Working without a license
- Having employees without workers’ compensation insurance
- Working on homes built before 1978 without a lead-safe
license (the CCB website tells you whether a contractor has this license)
“Generally, it is illegal in Oregon for anyone to do
construction work for hire without a CCB license,” Jessup said.
Homeowners who hire unlicensed workers may be considered
employers. If this happens, the homeowner may be responsible to buy workers’
compensation insurance, obtain required building permits and meet other duties
Report unlicensed contractors
Contractors and consumers can report unlicensed contractors
and other illegal activity on the CCB’s website or by calling 503-934-2246.