The Illinois Attorney General is investigating several scams tied to tornado recovery and relief efforts.
Attorney General Lisa Madigan says, as expected, hundreds of contractors have already streamed into Washington, Brookport, Pekin and other towns affected by the recent storms.
“The hope obviously is that all, if not the vast majority of contractors, are truly there to help people,” Madigan said, “but the reality is that every time one of these devastating storms takes place, a percentage of those people and those organizations are scam artists.”
Madigan says investigators are in those towns, asking contractors for contact information should there be any complaints. She says that typically scares off many of the would-be scammers.
Gov. Pat Quinn has asked President Barack Obama to declare 15 counties in Illinois major disaster areas after tornadoes and strong storms hit the state last week.
Quinn also said Monday that state and federal assessment teams found the storms damaged more than 2,400 homes in Illinois. That includes nearly 800 homes that were destroyed.
State agencies continue to help Illinois communities recover from the Nov. 17 storms. Illinois Department of Transportation equipment and Illinois Department of Corrections inmate crews are working to remove debris. The state will have resource centers in Washington and Brookport through Tuesday.
The governor’s office says state and federal emergency officials will meet with local governments early next month to document storm expenses.
The National Weather Service says two dozen tornadoes struck Illinois and another 28 hit Indiana. Six people in Illinois were killed and 147 were injured.