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Riley Real Estate + Alabama

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					                                                                           ALABAMA DEPARTMENT OF ECONOMIC
OFFICE OF THE GOVERNOR
                                                                                AND COMMUNITY AFFAIRS

     BOB RILEY                                                                       BILL JOHNSON
      GOVERNOR
                                                                                         DIRECTOR


                                          STATE OF ALABAMA
For Immediate Release:                                                                    Contact:
Thursday, July 26, 2007                                                                   Mike Presley
                                                                                          Larry Childers
                                                                                          (334) 242-5525


      Riley Awards Grant to Help Mobile County Fight Crime
                     After Natural Disasters
   MONTGOMERY—Gov. Bob Riley has awarded $650,000 to help Mobile County protect its residents from
   fraud and scams in the aftermath of natural disasters.
           The county will use the grant to continue the District Attorney’s Disaster Response Team and Fraud
   Strike Force. The team is a multi-agency effort organized to protect homeowners, businesses and residents
   from criminal schemes related to disaster recovery.
           “Criminals who prey on residents left vulnerable by a natural disaster must be caught and punished,”
   Riley said. “I am pleased to support the team’s efforts to protect citizens from fraud and scams.”
           The Disaster Response Team warns residents of scams and teaches them ways they can avoid being
   victimized. The group has created and distributed a booklet that tells residents how to gather and store
   personal information that may be needed for shelters, insurance claims, emergency relocation and other
   assistance after a natural disaster. The team is made up of 150 representatives from the banking, insurance,
   building and real estate industries, local law enforcement agencies and the Better Business Bureau.
           The Fraud Strike Force is a partnership of regulatory, licensing and law enforcement agencies that
   gives Mobile residents an easy way to report contractor fraud and other crimes related to recovery from
   natural disasters. The group coordinates investigations and prosecutes cases when deemed appropriate.
           Riley awarded the grant from funds made available to Alabama by the U.S. Justice Department. The
   Alabama Department of Economic and Community Affairs will administer the award. Riley informed
   Stephen Nodine, president of the County Commission, that the grant had been approved. Matching funds of
   $72,222 have been committed to the task force.
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