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UPDATED AEF sues online payment provider

Submitted by on 1, December 4, 2008 – 11:48 amNo Comment

As I told you Wednesday, the Alameda Education Foundation has sued the company handling its online payments for after-school enrichment classes, claiming the company has failed to forward $40,000 in payments.

AEF sued Count Me In of Bellevue, Wash., claiming the company was late on and installment payment due on November 21.

AEF’s executive director, Brooke Briggance, said Count Me In’s parent company has fallen on hard times and had not forwarded the payments as required. AEF and the company worked out an installment plan for some $81,000 in parent-paid enrichment class fees, with payments to start in mid-October.

The company made the first two payments but missed the third one, the lawsuit says. So AEF sued. Briggance said Page Barnes is handling AEF’s case for free. She said the company has 30 days to respond to AEF’s complaint.

Briggance admitted that the missed payments do impact AEF’s bottom line (the nonprofit had a budget of around $370,000 in 2006-07, according to its 2007 tax form, the latest available). But she said the enrichment program is strong, and that AEF is working to expand it.

“Of course the delay in receiving these payments presents a financial challenge for the foundation, which is why we are taking it seriously and pursuing legal remedy as vigorously as possible,” Briggance said. “As far as enrichment itself goes – it is still running strong.”

The online payment system on AEF’s site has been shut down, though Count Me In’s logo remains on the page. Briggance said the nonprofit is sticking to paper registration forms for the time being.

Representatives from Count Me In did not return a call seeking comment.

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