Friday, November 5, 1999
Houston, Texas
Volume 65, Issue 54

Media 'stereotypes' may play role in hate crimes

UHS Fort Bend construction begins

Staff: Updated handook needed

Minority medical program open

College stores sue

Cougar Comics Online

About the Cougar

ATM troubles will be resolved, bank says

No specific problem found with machines

By James Idea
Daily Cougar Staff

Woodforest National Bank is considering the possibility of replacing the ATM at Oberholtzer Hall before the semester ends, in response to recent complaints of short-changing and substandard customer service.

"The biggest problem is that the ATM at Oberholtzer Hall is almost always out of service," sophomore engineering major Obi Anyigbo said. "There is always something wrong with the machine, and in addition to being short-changed, there have been instances when I've received information of other people's accounts."

Such complaints were highlighted last week when Students' Association Sen. Bill Kelly accused the bank of "ripping off" students.

Bank managers said they have been taking every step necessary to resolve the problems.

"Contrary to what students say, Woodforest sends people every day to check all the ATMs on campus," UH branch manager Gina Grossman said. "I admit that there have been problems with the ATM in Oberholtzer Hall, but if customers are ever short-changed, we make sure that they get their money back."

"We've had only about two customers per week who have complained about the ATM at Oberholtzer Hall," Grossman said.

She also responded to Kelly's report that a resident adviser who called the bank to complain about the ATM was told, "Maybe you should carry more cash on hand," calling the problem "exaggerated."

The bank only provides service to the ATM, but a repair company such as Smith Southern takes care of any mechanical problems, Woodforest branch Vice President Ben Carter said.

"We're just as mad as the students, if not more upset, if these machines are not working," Carter said. "But what students need to know is that there isn't much that the employers at the bank can do to make the machines work."

He explained that when an ATM problem occurs, the bank is contacted by Comlink, a company that monitors the machines. The bank then calls Smith Southern to repair the problem.

"But unless Comlink contacts us or if students visit our offices to make complaints, we have no way of knowing if there's a problem with the machines," Carter said.

He said a problem with the Oberholtzer ATM has yet to be identified.

"So far, the repair company has been unable to find the exact mechanical problem, but if these problems persist, then we'll have the machines replaced," Carter said.

Woodforest provides the only ATM service on campus, and Grossman said all six campus machines work at least 95 percent of the time.

Customers experiencing problems with any of the ATMs on campus should call the bank at (713) 743-1084 or visit the branch on the second floor of the University Center.

Kelly said the SA would also look into inviting a Woodforest representative to address the Senate at its next meeting.

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