On 18 May 2001 Ameri-Source Publications sent this church an invoice for $299.95 for listing in a national yellow pages. Later a $9.00 service charge was added.
When contacted by the church to determine what this was about, we encountered a very rude person who informed us that this was a listing ordered by the former minister of this church. All further contact with this company either resulted in no return call when a message was left, or extreme rudeness was used to discourage any further attempt to resolve this billing. All of this transpired BEFORE the publication was printed.
Beside the unnecessary nature of a local church of 50 people wanting or needing a national listing, the minister was not authorized to make purchases of this amount. That is reserved for the Board of Trustees only. When asked, the minister had no knowledge of ever intending to place an order or even of having engaged in a conversation regarding an order. The claim of an order by Ameri-Source was entirely bogus.
The company claims to have a recording of the minister placing the order and agreeing that she had the authority to be able to do so.
We have repeatedly told Ameri-Source Publications we do not intend to pay for something the board did not order or authorize or even have use for.
Today, 6/18/2002 we received a call from American Solutions, a collection company that we feel is a division of Ameri-Source. A Steve Jarrett (possibly an alias) at 1-866-299-4531 attempted to collect this bogus invoice.
In no time he was willing to waive the $9.00 service charge and reduce the billing to a $69.95 "cancellation charge."
It is my opinion that this "cancellation charge," is a number designed to be small enough that most small churches will pay to get the matter handled, and after all it is lees then retaining a lawyer. In that light, I feel it should be called an "extortion fee."
I have found where Ameri-Source Publications has an unsatisfactory business performance record with the Buffalo, NY BBB and has generated 448 complaints as of nearly a year ago.