Treasurer’s Top 10: Riley County

This week, we highlight Riley County! Here’s a look at the Top 10 people there with unclaimed assets. Do you know anyone below?

If so, have them check out www.kansascash.com  and search their name to make a claim for their lost money or property. They can also call 800-432-0386 (toll-free) or 785-296-4165.

Riley County Courthouse

  1. Veronica Robinson
  2. Andrew Gray
  3. James Mulkey
  4. James Pucket
  5. Daniel Wright
  6. E. Lowe Clowney
  7. Elizabeth Jean Griffin
  8. Jean Heffel
  9. Susie Pasko
  10. Merrill Blackman

Learning Quest® 14th Annual Make Your Mark Contest to Award $10,000 in Prizes

TOPEKA, Kan. — Seventh and eighth grade students across Kansas can showcase their creativity and win an education savings account in the 14th annual Learning Quest Make Your Mark Contest. The Learning Quest 529 Education Savings Program is Kansas’ state-sponsored 529 plan, designed to help families invest for their child’s continued education after high school.

This year’s theme is “your future is a clean slate where anything is possible.” Students are being asked to think ahead 20 years from now and explain how they’d be introduced and what they’d discuss if asked to give a commencement speech to the class of 2035 at their former high school. They can choose to respond in one of two categories: the written where they can submit a traditional essay format (up to 350 words) or the creative where they can articulate themselves with a drawing, poetry, collage, video or any other sort of visual response.

“This contest is a perfect fit for our Learning Quest program,” said Kansas State Treasurer Ron Estes, who administers the Learning Quest 529 Program. “It encourages Kansas youth to reflect on future career goals they’ve set for themselves, and consider the training or education they’ll need to achieve those dreams.”

The contest, open to all seventh and eighth grade students in Kansas, begins mid-August, and all entries must be postmarked or submitted electronically at http://essay.LearningQuest.com/ by Oct. 9, 2015.

Prizes include $2,000 Learning Quest accounts for the first-place winner in each of the two categories. Learning Quest judges will also select up to five entries per category to be posted online for public voting for the chance to win the People’s Choice prize of $1,000 per category. Additionally, each of the schools attended by the four winners (the two winners selected by the judges and the two winners by public voting) will receive a $1,000 prize from Learning Quest. Prizes are provided by American Century Investments.

“Since beginning this contest 14 years ago, we’ve had schools continue to support the contest year after year, encouraging students to plan ahead and prepare for their future,” said Estes. “Giving a prize to each of the winning students’ schools is our way of thanking the teachers, principals and school administrators of our Kansas schools for their commitment towards the education of our state’s next generation.”

To learn more and download participation materials, visit the contest website at http://essay.LearningQuest.com/. Updates can also be found on the Learning Quest Facebook page at www.Facebook.com/KSLearningQuest529.

The Learning Quest 529 Education Savings Program was created to help families invest for their child’s continued education after high school, whether at a traditional four-year college, community college, or technical school. Learning Quest investors benefit from tax-deferred growth and tax-free withdrawals when used for qualified education expenses (tax benefits may be conditioned on meeting certain requirements). Kansas taxpayers can receive a Kansas tax deduction up to $3,000 per child ($6,000 if married, filing jointly) on contributions to Learning Quest or any other 529 plan sponsored by another state.

Ron Estes is the 39th state treasurer for the state of Kansas and is the first state-wide elected official from the city of Wichita in 20 years. He was elected to serve as the Midwest Regional Vice President for the National Association of State Treasurers 2012-2013, and now serves on the College Savings Plans Network Executive Board and the National Association of Unclaimed Property Administrators Executive Board. Ron has also served as Sedgwick County Treasurer and as the treasurer for the Kansas County Treasurers’ Association. He was born in Topeka and is a fifth-generation Kansan. Ron and his wife, Susan, have three children.

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Before investing, carefully consider the plan’s investment objectives, risks, charges and expenses. This information and more about the plan can be found in the Learning Quest Handbook, available by contacting American Century Investment Services, Inc., Distributor and Underwriter, at 1-877-345-8837, and should be read carefully before investing. If you are not a Kansas taxpayer, consider before investing whether your or the beneficiary’s home state offers a 529 Plan that provides its taxpayers with state tax and other benefits not available through this plan. Notice: Accounts established under Learning Quest and their earnings are neither insured nor guaranteed by the state of Kansas, the Kansas State Treasurer or American Century Investments.

No purchase necessary. Void where prohibited. See official rules for details at http://learningquest.com/essay.

The earnings portion of non-qualified withdrawals is subject to federal and state income taxes and a 10% federal penalty.

The availability of tax or other benefits may be conditioned on meeting certain requirements, such as residency, purpose for or timing of distributions, or other factors.

IRS Circular 230 Disclosure: American Century Companies, Inc. and its affiliates do not provide tax advice. Accordingly, any discussion of U.S. tax matters contained herein (including any attachments) is not intended or written to be used, and cannot be used, in connection with the promotion, marketing or recommendation by anyone unaffiliated with American Century Companies, Inc. of any of the matters addressed herein or for the purpose of avoiding U.S. tax-related penalties.

Administered by Kansas State Treasurer Ron Estes
Managed by American Century Investment Management, Inc.
©2015 American Century Proprietary Holdings, Inc. All rights reserved.  

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Treasurer Estes Announces Successful Ruling in Case Against U.S. Treasury

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
August 20, 2015

TOPEKA, Kan. State Treasurer Ron Estes today announced an initial victory in Kansas’ efforts to force the U.S. Treasury to deliver matured U.S. savings bonds to the state as unclaimed property. Judge Elaine Kaplan with the U.S. Court of Federal Claims denied the U.S. Treasury’s request to dismiss Estes v. United States, No. 13-cv-01011 (Fed. Cl. filed Dec. 20, 2013.)

“This is certainly great news and a significant milestone towards our efforts to obtain the remaining bond money that rightfully belongs to the state of Kansas so that we can help return it to its original owners or their heirs,” said Kansas State Treasurer Ron Estes. “We estimate that the U.S. Treasury is holding more than $17 billion worth of U.S. savings bonds that are no longer earning interest, with $150 million of this amount issued to residents of Kansas. The U.S. Treasury does not have a process to return these bonds as unclaimed property.”

The U.S. Treasury Department has already allowed Kansas to redeem more than $860,000 in matured U.S. Savings bonds that banks delivered to the State Treasurer’s Office with the contents of unclaimed safe deposit boxes. Kansas became the first state in the country to obtain ownership and proceeds for U.S. savings bonds within its possession in November of 2013.

“Some of these bonds date back to World War I, and many of the original owners or their heirs are unaware that the U.S. Treasury is still holding their money,” explained Estes.

Even though the U.S. Treasury Department has recognized the state’s rights as owners of the bonds within its possession, they denied the state treasurer’s request to redeem the remaining class of all matured U.S. savings bonds issued to owners with a last known address in Kansas.

The court’s order rejected the U.S. Treasury’s attempt to change its longstanding interpretation of its regulations establishing the procedures for redeeming U.S. Savings bonds, which would have limited all states’ ability to take title to them only if the state possesses the bonds. The U.S Treasury Department’s records identify the owners of matured bonds, and this order will begin the process of requiring the U.S. Treasury to give access to this data so the state can identify bonds issued to Kansans.

“It’s encouraging to see all the hard work and collaboration of this initiative’s many supporters make headway,” said Estes. “I want to thank Brett Millbourn with the law firm Walters Bender Strohbehn & Vaughan, P.C. and David Charles Frederick with Kellogg, Huber, Hansen, Todd, Evans & Figel, P.L.L. for their excellent work in the presentation of our arguments to the court and all my staff for their continued dedication to this case. It’s been a lengthy process, years in the making, but we remain committed to seeing this through to the end.”

“Eighteen states have now passed legislation allowing them to take title to and redeem matured savings bonds issued to their residents,” said Estes. “I’m proud that Kansas has been able to lead the way on this issue and that other states will be able to take advantage of our success in this case.”

Ron Estes is the 39th state treasurer for the state of Kansas and is the first state-wide elected official from the city of Wichita in 20 years. He was elected to serve as the Midwest Regional Vice President for the National Association of State Treasurers 2012-2013, and now serves on the College Savings Plans Network Executive Board and the National Association of Unclaimed Property Administrators Executive Board. Ron has also served as Sedgwick County Treasurer and as the treasurer for the Kansas County Treasurers’ Association. He was born in Topeka and is a fifth-generation Kansan. Ron and his wife, Susan, have three children.

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For more information:
Ashley Murdie
Director of Communications
785.296.3538
ashley@treasurer.ks.gov

Part of $300 MILLION Could Be Yours!

The State Treasurer’s Office currently has more than $300 MILLION in unclaimed property and part of it could be YOURS!

Visit www.KansasCash.com today to search for your name and find out.

Treasurer’s Top 10: Jefferson County

This week, we highlight Jefferson County! Here’s a look at the Top 10 people there with unclaimed assets. Do you know anyone below?

If so, have them check out www.kansascash.com  and search their name to make a claim for their lost money or property. They can also call 800-432-0386 (toll-free) or 785-296-4165.Jefferson County Map

1. Cheryl Deck
2. Robert McElroy
3. Verna Johnston
4. A.B. Never
5. Mickey Vining
6. Daryle Bates
7. Alvin Sherbeck
8. Gary Laskowsky
9. Ronnie Dale Harper
10. Theodore Oldenburg Jr.

Money Matters: How to Dispute a Credit Card Charge

By Jason Alderman  PracticalMoneySkills.com

Have you ever ordered something online that was delivered damaged or never arrived at all? Or been double-billed by a merchant? Or spotted a charge on your credit card statement you didn’t make? Most of us have.Credit Card

Fortunately, the 1975 Fair Credit Billing Act (FCBA) protects your rights during such credit card billing disputes. It also outlines the process for contesting charges made to your account. Here’s how it works:

First, FCBA protection applies only to “open-end” credit account transactions ‘ those involving credit cards or revolving charges (e.g., department store accounts). It doesn’t cover installment contracts you repay on a fixed schedule, such as car loans.

Billing errors that are covered by the FCBA include:

  • Fraudulent or unauthorized use of your credit card, whether it was stolen or merchants charged unapproved items to your account.
  • Charges that list the wrong date or amount.
  • Charges for goods or services you either did not accept or that weren’t delivered as agreed.
  • Math errors, such as being charged twice for a transaction.
  • Failure to post payments or other credits.

(Note: Report suspected fraud immediately. By law, you’re only liable for the first $50 in unauthorized charges; however, most card issuers waive that liability if you report the charges quickly.)

Review all billing statements carefully upon receipt because in order to be covered under FCBA rules, most disputed transactions must be reported within 60 days of the statement date on which the error appeared.

First, contact the merchant and try to resolve the dispute directly with them. If this good-faith resolution attempt doesn’t work, you can escalate the process by filing a written report with your credit card issuer within the 60-day window.

The card issuer is then obligated to investigate the dispute on your behalf. They must acknowledge your complaint, in writing, within 30 days of receipt and resolve the dispute with the merchant within two billing cycles ‘ but not more than 90 days.

Send your letter via certified mail to the card issuer’s billing inquiry address, not the payment address. Include your name, address, account number and a description of the billing error. Include copies of sales slips or other documents that support your position.

According to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), you may withhold payment of the disputed amount and related charges during the investigation. In fact, many card issuers may voluntarily remove the charge until the matter is resolved since they are representing you, their client, in the dispute.

If it turns out your bill contains a mistake, the creditor must explain, in writing, the corrections that will be made. In addition to crediting your account, they must remove all finance charges, late fees, or other charges related to the error.

However, if the card issuer’s investigation determines that you owe part ‘ or all ‘ of the disputed amount, they must promptly provide you with a written explanation. If you disagree with the investigation’s results, you may further dispute your claim with the creditor, as outlined by the FTC at www.consumer.ftc.gov/articles/0219-fair-credit-billing. (That site also contains a sample dispute letter and other helpful FCBA information.)

If you believe a creditor has violated the FCBA, you may file a complaint with the FTC or sue them in court.

Hopefully, you’ll never have a billing dispute that goes to these extremes. But it’s good to know how consumer laws protect you, just in case.

Treasurer’s Top 10: Finney County

This week, we highlight Finney County! Here’s a look at the Top 10 people there with unclaimed assets. Do you know anyone below? If so, have them check out www.kansascash.com  and search their name to make a claim for their lost money or property. They can also call 800-432-0386 (toll-free) or 785-296-4165.Finney County Courthouse

  1. Camille Glee Rizzo
  2. George Wharton
  3. Pheasant Valley Development LLC
  4. Clarence Gigot
  5. Dana Lewis
  6. Arthur Drussel
  7. Val Agri Inc
  8. Eleanor Sarah Wharton
  9. Joan Lohmann
  10. Gretchen Paul