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Senior claims she was ripped off by paving firm

By Staff
Clif Knight, Hartselle Enquirer
Othello Parker, 70, of Hartselle claims a Tanner paving contractor misrepresented himself and charged her $800 more than what she agreed to pay to have her driveway paved.
"He walked up my driveway on Oct. 10 and said he had enough plant mix left over from a subdivision job in the neighborhood to surface it." Parker said. "I asked him what it would cost and he told me it would run about $1,000. I told me I would have to think about it for a while and he said he was talking to someone else in the neighborhood that was interested. He then gave me a business card and asked me to let him know if I decided to have the work done."
Parker said she contacted the contractor the next day to have the work done.
"I asked about a signed agreement but he said it was customary for him to give the property owner a signed invoice after the work was completed. Thirty to 40 minutes later, a convoy of what looked like top notch paving equipment pulled up in front of my driveway," she added.
Parker lives at 801 Burns Road. She said her driveway is about 500-feet long.
She said when the work was completed the contractor presented her with a bill for $1,800.
"I told him I wasn't going to pay it because it was $800 more than what I expected to be charged. The answer he gave was that he had more mix on his trucks than what he thought he had. After we argued back and forth, he told his men to roll up the asphalt and put it back in the trucks. I didn't want that to happen so I went ahead and paid the $1,800," she said.
She also she called him back later and complained about more than half of the driveway being surfaced with one to one-half inches of mix instead of the three inches he promised. I told him if he would refund me $900, I would consider the matter settled. He replied that he wasn't going to refund me anything."
She added that a check with the Better Business Bureau indicated that the contractor had two complaints from property owners against him.
Parker said she plans to take the contractor to small claims court for a settlement.
"I would remind anyone, especially senior citizens, who is approached by a contractor wanting to do work for them to make sure they get references from others he or she has done work for and have a contract in writing before the job is started."