PREVIEW: New DATCP investigation to air April 29 - WKOW 27: Madison, WI Breaking News, Weather and Sports

PREVIEW: New DATCP investigation to air April 29

By Dan Cassuto - bio | email | Twitter | Facebook | Blog  |  (608) 661 2727

MADISON (WKOW) -- In continuing coverage of our investigative series, WKOW will debut a new special report on Thursday, April 29 at 10:00pm.

Our series questions the effectiveness of the state's consumer watchdog agency, the Dept. of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection.

Our reporting is in response to dozens of consumers who filed complaints about fraud and wrongdoing -- but heard nothing. 

We reveal a pattern of inaction at DATCP and a board of directors that lacks consumer protection experience.

Here are some highlights:

  • A former DATCP manager of 16 years comes forward to tell the truth about what happens after a consumer like you files a complaint.  Does it get serious attention?
  • DATCP defends itself with survey results claiming "90% of consumers who file complaints are satisfied."  Our investigation reveals these results could be seriously flawed.
  • DATCP's leadership lacks consumer protection experience.  The legislature requires the board of directors to have two "consumer representatives."  So why does one of those reps describe her primary experience as "agriculture"?
  • A Republican lawmaker comes forward with harsh criticism.  He calls DATCP "a consumer fraud in and of itself."  Is this a fair characterization?

DATCP's Secretary Rod Nilsestuen has also agreed to a sit-down interview with us.  For two months, Mr. Nilsestuen has repeatedly ignored emails and phone calls.  However, just last week, a DATCP spokesperson called to say the secretary has changed his mind.


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