Archive for  February 11th 2018

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FREEPORT, Maine – If you still haven’t gotten around to returning your blown-out L.L.Bean flannels from the 90s, then you’re too late.

L.L.Bean, the venerable Maine retailer of rustic boots and clothes, is ending its long-running, no questions asked return policy.

The policy, which has been in place for at least a century, was ruined by a few bad players, according to an open letter to customers.

“Increasingly, a small, but growing number of customers has been interpreting our guarantee well beyond its original intent,” says the letter from executive chairman Shawn Gorman.

“Some view it as a lifetime product replacement program, expecting refunds for heavily worn products used over many years,” he said. “Other seek refunds for products that have been purchased through third parties, such as yard sales.”

L.L.Bean, which is based in Freeport, still has a return policy. But starting on Friday, the company will only take back products if they are returned within one year of the purchase date, with proof of purchase. If the product is actually defective and the customer tries to return it after a year, the company said it will work out a “fair solution.”

Gorman said the change in return policy “will only affect a small percentage of returns.”

The rather liberal return policy had been in place since the days of Leon Leonwood Bean, who founded the company back in 1912 as a mail order retailer and maker of hunting boots with unusual chainlink style soles.

The original intent was that Bean didn’t want customers to be dissatisfied with his products.

OSKALOOSA, Iowa  —  Snow hit Fort Dodge on Friday, and Oskaloosa had its turn on Saturday.

Matt Saville and his crewmates at Oskaloosa Public Works have been pulling long hours dealing with the recent snowfall. On Saturday, they say seven inches fell in the heart of the city.

“Sleep has been a stranger this week. Going into today we had just shy of 60 hours, so by the time the weekend’s over I’d venture to say we’ll be in the 80-hour range,” said Saville.

Clearing the roads has taken time; Saville says residents have been patient and understanding, but at the same time says he would be fine with the snow stopping.

“More than done with winter, sign me up and I’ll be more than happy to be done with it!” he said.

While Saville says he could go for some beach weather, if you look in the right places, you can find people like Lance Patton, who say, “bring on another round!”

“Tryin’ to shovel and make some money, been waiting for a big snow storm and we’re finally getting it. I hear we’re supposed to be getting more, so I’m hoping we do,” he said as he shoveled a neighbor’s sidewalk.

For others in Oskaloosa, even if they get a few inches on Sunday, the last few days have been nothing to get worked up about.

“I remember, like, blizzards where it like blew up to the rooftops, and we’d crawl out of the attics or the barn and go sledding. Kids these days haven’t seen snow like we did back in the 80s and 90s,” said Hope Rief.

Rief is a property manager and has been clearing snow at 10 properties. The tough Iowan say she just takes it as it comes.

“As long as it stays warm like this, ’cause to me this is warm, I don’t mind it,” she said in the 14-degree weather.

Oskaloosa Public Works says the snow ordinance will be in effect Saturday night, so residents should move their cars off the side of the roads so plows can get through.