Back in 2017, we alerted KETK News viewers to a roofing contractor who was accused of stealing thousands of dollars from East Texans.
“They needed to be able to pay for all the material and everything else like that,” said Donald Nunn, who says he was cheated by the contractor. “And they would need a check which would cover a little bit better than half.”
He gave Jerry Whitley of JW Roofing almost $7,000. And Rob Grey says he handed over a $3,000 deposit to start repairs on his roof. That was the last he heard from Whitley.
“I text him, I called him, left voicemails, emailed him, nothing,” said Grey.
Both men say they paid Whitley thousands, but he never showed up to do the work.
A bill making the rounds in the house right now would make it harder for bad contractors to swindle unsuspecting consumers.
HB 2101 would require roofers to be licensed, they would have to register, provide an address and phone number, as well as pay a small licensing fee to the state.
Requirements Dallas attorney Steve Badger says need to be enforced.
“This bill is needed for Texas consumers who are getting ripped off by bad contractors,” said Badger.
A group called The Texas Independent Roofing Contractors Association has been fighting against the bill, saying it creates a barrier for small businesses.
“It seems to me a lot more energy could be spent in informing folks how to choose a good roofer, it’s not that hard,” said Carl Isset, a lobbyist for The Texas Independent Roofing Contractors Association. “But there are protections in place. This bill doesn’t change current law.”
Supporters hope the bill will better protect homeowners and their wallets.