Attorney general warns against scams as Alabamians look to rebuild

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (WSFA) – Alabamians continue to recover from last week’s deadly tornadoes. State Attorney General Steve Marshall visited the city of Selma with tips on how to avoid construction scams.

He says when vetting a construction company.

“Number one, ask for their license — they ought to be able to produce it,” Marshall said. “Get a quote, put it in writing that’s required by Alabama law. Seek references to be able to ask for those that had performed work for individuals.”

An example of Alabama home building license(Erin Davis)

“If they can’t produce this card, you do not want to mess with them,” said Sam Gowan with the Alabama Home Builders Licensure Board. “They are here to take advantage of you.”

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In low-income neighborhoods, tenants have to wait on their landlords to start the rebuilding process.

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Anna Ellis has been without power for almost a week due to a tree falling onto her home.

“We just can’t get no power with that tree being in there,” said Ellis.

“We’ve been cutting on that tree for a couple of days now,” said Lemarkus Snow.

Lemarkus Snow has been volunteering his company, Snow’s Cleaning Service, to help while residents wait.

“As you can see, the houses over here in Ward 6 are practically falling,” Snow added. “There’s really nothing left. Versus the homes in the richer part of the community that is brick and still standing.”

He’s not making money but says the community needs all the help it can get on this long process.

“For Selma to be back to Selma looking like it was before the tornado hit, I say about 14 months,” said Snow.

“The focus has been on disaster relief in the sense of removing damage, making structures safe. You know, it’s the next phase that we’re really talking about. And that’s the rebuilding side.”

Residents say no matter how long it takes, the city of Selma will rebuild stronger than before.

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