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Trump Voters Still Want that Wall… Even If We Pay For It!

MoneyTipsDuring his successful Presidential campaign, Donald Trump vowed to crack down on illegal immigration, promising, "I will build a great, great wall on our southern border, and I will make Mexico pay for that wall." Do we still want a wall built? A recent MoneyTips survey says no, but Trump voters say yes. In fact, they're willing to have America pay for it! When Donald Trump accepted the nomination for President at the Republican convention, he told the crowd, "Decades of record immigration have produced lower wages and higher unemployment for our citizens, especially for African-American and Latino workers." In an exclusive MoneyTips survey conducted in June, 466 Americans were asked whether they agreed or disagreed with the following statement: I believe President Trump's immigration policies are improving the American economy. Half of the people surveyed disagreed, with nearly 3 out of 4 of them (74.2%) disagreeing strongly. The results: Less than 1 out of 3 (30.3%) agreed with the statement, with less than 15% agreeing strongly, and less than 16% merely agreeing. Women especially do not feel Trump's immigration policies are helping the economy; 54.5% disagreed to some extent, with only 27% in agreement. For men, less than 45% (44.5%) disagreed, with more than 34% agreeing. Age also appeared to be a factor, as only 20% of people younger than 40 agreed at any level with the statement, and a whopping 58.8% disagreed. Among those older, 35.6% agreed, and 45.4% disagreed. Who did agree with the President? Trump voters. Nearly 35% agreed strongly, while more than 35% simply agreed. More than 70% of Trump supporters agreed overall, while less than 7% disagreed at all with the statement. In contrast, less than 5% of Hillary Clinton supporters agreed, and more than 87% disagreed. People who didn't vote for either top vote-getter, or didn't vote at all, also didn't agree. Says Dr. Michael Zey, Professor of Management at Montclair State University's Feliciano School of Business in New Jersey, "The majority of Americans surveyed reveal that they are not convinced his immigration policies will help the economy. Trump must take his case to the American people even as he attempts to dramatically transform America's immigration strategy." What's the most we should spend to build a wall between the US and Mexico? 59% of people surveyed did not want a wall built. A look at the results: Women wanted the wall less than men did, with 63.5% of the women and 53.6% of the men reporting that they opposed building it. Although the majority was against it in nearly every age group, older respondents tended to want the wall more than younger ones. More than 72% of adults under 29 were opposed, while that number drops to 51% for people aged 60 and up. Two-thirds of the people whose families make $50,000 or less annually were against the wall, as opposed to 54% of the people whose families make more. On the other hand, less than 20% of Trump voters said they didn't desire a wall, as opposed to more than 80% of the non-Trump voters. Compare that to Hillary Clinton supporters; nearly 88% were opposed. Among the people who want a wall, is there a limit to how many tax dollars we should spend? The answer appears to be no. Over half (52.4%) of those who want to build the wall say do it no matter the cost. Of the rest, 31.4% say spend up to $10 billion, 10.5% limit it to $15 billion, and 5.8% cap spending at $20 billion. Regarding the cost in April, Trump estimated, "I think $10 billion or less. And if I do a super-duper, higher, better, better security, everything else, maybe it goes a little bit more." He recently proposed a "solar wall" that could "create energy and pay for itself." Among people who desire the wall, the group that wants it the most no matter the cost contains families who earn more than $200,000 annually. 63.6% of those high-earners who want the wall wouldn't cap the costs. Among those surveyed whose families earn $50,000 annually or less, less than half (49.2%) don't care about costs. Older people also cared less about cost than younger people polled did. Only 43.4% of wall-proponents under 40 set no limit on costs, compared to 55.8% of those 40 and older. Trump supporters may want to build the wall, but many also want to budget for it. While more than 56% of wall-proponents wouldn't limit the costs, 31.1% would spend up to $10 billion, 9.1% up to $15 billion, and 3.8% would cap spending at $20 billion. Those findings are similar to the overall numbers. However, among the few Clinton voters who want the wall built, over half (52.6%) would only spend up to $10 billion, and only 31.6% would build it without considering cost. Summarizes sociologist Zey, author of many books including Ageless Nation, "Throughout the election campaign, Trump repeatedly argued that a restriction on both legal and illegal immigration would stem the influx of cheap labor and thereby strengthen Americans' job and wage prospects. He also linked illegal immigrants entering via the US-Mexico border to terrorism and crime. Americans not only voted Trump into office but also provided him a GOP House and Senate to produce legislation that addresses their concerns. Expect Trump to follow in the footsteps of previous presidents and make good on his campaign promises through legislation and executive orders." Read more exclusive Trump survey results and check your credit score and credit report for free within minutes with Credit Manager by MoneyTips. Photo ©iStockphoto.com/AndrewLinscott Originally Posted at: https://www.moneytips.com/trump-voters-still-want-that-wall-even-if-we-pay-for-it/312Today's Headlines Trump and Taxes Part 2Poll: 57% Of Americans Think Trump Will Affect Their Retirement StrategyHow Will Trump Affect The Workplace

Woman breaks for mental health days; boss' reply goes viral

A Michigan woman who suffers from depression emailed her team at work informing them that she would be taking days off to focus on her mental health and well-being, and her boss’ response has gained much attention online. 

>> Read more trending news 

Madalyn Parker, a web developer at Olark Live Chat, took to Twitter to post a screenshot of her email communication with her co-workers and a supervisor.

In an email titled “Where’s Madalyn?” Parker told her team she’d be taking off two days to renew her mental health. 

“Hopefully, I’ll be back next week refreshed and back to 100%,” she wrote. 

Parker was surprised and delighted by one of the responses she received. She asked the sender if she could post a screenshot of the reply, and he told her yes.

“Hey Madalyn, I just wanted to personally thank you for sending emails like this. Every time you do, I use it as a reminder of the importance of using sick days for mental health,” Ben Cogleton, the CEO of Olark wrote. “I can’t believe this is not a standard practice at all organizations.”

He continued: “You are an example to us all and help cut through the stigma so we can all bring our whole selves to work.”  

Parker’s post of the conversation garnered more than 34,000 likes on Twitter and sparked conversations about companies’ obligation to provide mental health days.

“It’s 2017. I cannot believe that it is still controversial to speak about mental health in the workplace when 1 in 6 Americans are medicated for mental health,” Cogleton wrote in a blog post. “We are in a knowledge economy. Our jobs require us to execute at peak mental performance. When an athlete is injured they sit on the bench and recover. Let’s get rid of the idea that somehow the brain is different.”

Today's Headlines: Credit Scores Drop For Mortgage Refinances

MoneyTips Opening Up the Housing Market According to a recent report by The Urban Institute, mortgage credit is coming into reach for a growing number of Americans. The median credit score associated with home mortgages backed by primary mortgage purchasers Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac dropped from 742 to 725 between June 2016 and April 2017, resulting in the lowest median value since the housing crisis. At the same time, Fannie and Freddie are altering one of the primary criteria for potential mortgage borrowers. Both agencies are increasing the acceptable limit on debt-to-income ratio (DTI), the percentage of your gross income devoted to paying off your monthly debts, from 45% to 50%. In essence, lenders are willing to cut you more slack on your debt load when evaluating your ability to repay a mortgage. On the surface, this is good news for the housing market. A lower median credit score and greater debt tolerance opens up the housing market to more potential homebuyers, helping to spur market growth. However, each factor has secondary considerations that may blunt the positive effects. Supply and Demand The Urban Institute's more detailed analysis found that mortgage refinancing was the primary driver in falling median credit scores. The median credit score for refinancing actually rose from June 2016 to October 2016, and then fell 27 points to reach 725 in April 2017. Median credit scores for home purchases also hit 725 in April 2017, but only fell four points from October to reach that mark. You can check your credit score and read your credit report for free within minutes using Credit Manager by MoneyTips. The data shows a similar cycle between October 2014 and July 2015, where the median score for refinancing increased and broke away from the median credit score for home purchases, only to fall back to the same level. Why would these cycles occur? It may relate to differences in supply and demand. For home purchases, supply and demand are dictated by the number of available homes in the price range of potential homebuyers, the number of buyers competing for those homes, and the general financial conditions of those homebuyers. With refinancing, the number of available homes or buyers is not a factor – you only care about your home and its current value. Refinancing requires a low enough interest rate for you to see a financial benefit. Rates have been relatively low for some time, and many who qualified for refinancing have already done so – leaving lenders scrambling for more business in this segment. Rising home prices and interest rates that are still relatively low make refinancing a reasonable opportunity, but to get the desired loan volume, lenders must find ways to extend loan qualifications in a responsible way. Lenders and the agencies are not adjusting rules out of empathy – they are proceeding because it's a sound business decision from their perspective. Recalculating Acceptable Risk While lenders may be willing to extend the DTI limit to attract more customers, they're not willing to simply open the floodgates as in the pre-crisis days. There is still genuine business incentive – and regulatory pressure – for lenders to accurately gauge borrowers' ability to pay. Fannie Mae made this clear, noting that over a decade of research has shown that borrowers that fall into the 45% to 50% DTI range are a relatively good risk and not likely to default. Many have mitigating factors such as significant down payment funds or financial reserves. In order to maintain the same risk ratio, it's possible that borrowers with a higher DTI ratio — but an otherwise stellar credit history — could receive a mortgage loan over a borrower with a DTI ratio below 45% but with other extenuating factors, such as a history of periodically missing payments. The DTI shift is increasing the pool of potential applicants, but not necessarily the number of approved borrowers. These changes may help you to qualify for a mortgage, especially a refinancing loan, but in the end you still have to qualify based on your collective financial metrics. The Takeaway Lower credit score thresholds and greater acceptable debt levels may make it easier for you to buy or refinance a home, but you need to consider all factors carefully before taking on a new mortgage. Just because you have the ability to act doesn't mean you should. For refinancing, start by setting your objective. Are you simply trying to lower your monthly payments? Pay off your loan earlier and save on total interest cost? Remove private mortgage insurance? Once your objectives are clear, it's relatively easy to use online refinance calculators to determine if your desired benefits are greater than the refinancing costs. You must be equally cautious when buying a home. Don't be tempted to buy a larger, more expensive home than you need – especially when you are now able to qualify because your current debt load is considered to be less of an obstacle. The bank may have decided that you will be able to repay the debt, but can you realistically agree? Map out your future budget assuming occasional large, unexpected expenses to verify that you are likely to avoid dangerous debt levels. If you find that these new conditions are in your favor, congratulations! Feel free to take advantage of your new opportunity. Just don't let it take advantage of you. MoneyTips is happy to help you get free mortgage and refinance quotes from top lenders. Photo ©iStockphoto.com/Pogonici Originally Posted at: https://www.moneytips.com/todays-headlines-credit-scores-drop-for-mortgage-refinances/292Video: How Your Credit Score Affects Your Mortgage RateToday’s Headlines: Housing: Supply Down, Prices Up How Can I Get the Lowest Mortgage Rate?

Chick-fil-A giving free food to cow-costumed customers on Cow Appreciation Day

You’ll just need a little more cowbell – or at least a cow suit – to snag some free Chick-fil-A on Tuesday.

>> Read more trending news

For the 13th year, Chick-fil-A will hold its Cow Appreciation Day event at its more than 2,100 stores nationwide. From opening until 7 p.m. Tuesday, adult customers who dress in cow attire – from “head-to-hoof,” according to the restaurant’s website – will be given a free Chick-fil-A entree, such as the Egg White Grill, Smokehouse BBQ Bacon sandwich, Original Sandwich and more. Children clad in their best moo costume will receive a free kids meal.

It’s the restaurant’s largest single-day customer appreciation event, and it celebrates Chick-fil-A’s popular “Eat Mor Chikin” Cows, which appear on billboards across the country.

“Every year we are amazed at the number of customers who participate in Cow Appreciation Day,” Jon Bridges, Chick-fil-A’s senior vice president and chief marketing officer, said in a statement.

Last year, more than 1.6 million free entrees were given to customers on Cow Appreciation Day. Just as in past years, Chick-fil-A encourages those who participate to share photos on social media using #CowAppreciationDay. There’s also a Cow Appreciation Day Snapchat filter, so snap, tweet or Instagram post till the cows come home.

Here are 25 Amazon Prime Day tech deals you can’t miss

Amazon Prime Day 2017 is finally upon us.

>> Diamonds, luggage and more non-tech Amazon Prime Day deals to watch out for

The official 30-hour cyber shopping extravaganza began at 9 p.m. Monday and features hundreds of lightning deals popping up every five minutes.

>> Read more trending news

>> Amazon Prime Day 2017: When is it; what's on sale?

Amazon released a list of some of the hottest 30-hour deals and bundles on tech products, including its own smart speaker.

>> Which smart speaker is right for you? Comparing Google Home, Amazon Echo and Apple HomePod

Here are 25 tech deals pulled from Amazon’s Monday press release:

  1. Save 50 percent on Amazon Echo, only $89.99
  2. Save $15 on Echo Dot, only $34.99
  3. Save $30 on Kindle Paperwhite, only $89.99
  4. Save $40 on Fire HD 8 Kids Edition, only $89.99
  5. Fire 7, our best-selling tablet, only $29.99
  6. Prime members who haven’t yet tried Amazon Music Unlimited can add four months of the full catalog streaming service for just $0.99 when buying Echo devices, Fire TV streaming media players or Fire tablets
  7. Save $75 on Echo Show and Arlo Security Camera bundle
  8. Save 30 percent on Echo Dot and TP-Link Smart Plug bundle
  9. Save $50 on August Smart Lock
  10. Echo Dot and Sony XB10 bundle, under $70
  11. Save big on Sony XB950B1 Extra Bass Wireless Headphones
  12. Save 45 percent on Libratone One Click portable Bluetooth speakers
  13. Save up to 50 percent on select video games, consoles and accessories
  14. Save up to 40 percent on PC gaming laptops, desktops and accessories
  15. Save 30 percent on RepRap Guru 3D Printer
  16. Save 50 percent on two-pack of Tile Slim Phone Finders
  17. Save big on Game of Thrones: The Complete Seasons 1-6 + Digital HD [Blu-ray]
  18. Newly released Element 55-inch 4K Ultra HD smart LED TV – Amazon Fire TV Edition, only $399.99
  19. 25 percent off select TCL smart TVs, starting at $119.99 for a 28-inch
  20. 32-inch 720p TCL TV, only $99.99
  21. 40-inch 1080p TCL TV, only $199.99
  22. 55-inch premium brand 4K smart LED TV, only $599.99
  23. Get 15 percent back on select Samsung TVs, audio and more on Prime Day with an Amazon Prime credit card
  24. Save more than 30 percent on Furbo Dog Camera with Interactive Treat Tossing, HD Wi-Fi Cam and 2-Way Audio
  25. Save 20 percent on Jackery Bolt 10050 External Battery Pack

Diamonds, luggage and more non-tech Amazon Prime Day deals to watch out for

Amazon Prime Day isn’t just about snagging the best deals on tech

>> Here are 25 Amazon Prime Day tech deals you can’t miss

>> Amazon Prime Day 2017: When is it; what's on sale?

The official 30-hour cyber shopping extravaganza began at 9 p.m. Monday and features hundreds of lightning deals popping up every five minutes, including a $499.99 deal on diamond stud earrings and big discounts on brands like Samsonite and Adidas.

>> Read more trending news

Ahead of the launch, Amazon released a list of some of the hottest 30-hour deals and bundles on tech products and non-tech products alike.

>> Which smart speaker is right for you? Comparing Google Home, Amazon Echo and Apple HomePod

Here are 21 non-tech deals pulled from Amazon’s Prime Day sneak peek press release:

  1. Save 40-50 percent on Prime Exclusive clothing, handbags and more
  2. Save 30 percent on select clothing, shoes and more for men, women, kids and baby
  3. Save big on diamond stud earrings – 1 carat diamond stud earrings for 499.99 or ½ carat diamond stud earrings for $239.99
  4. Save up to 70 percent on select Samsonite two-piece spinner sets
  5. Save up to 40 percent on select furniture, mattresses and rugs
  6. Save 20 percent on nursery essentials
  7. Save $100 on the Bissell Multi Reach Cordless Stick Vacuum
  8. Save up to 40 percent on Radio Flyer, Crayola, K'NEX and more
  9. Save up to 30 percent on select Under Armour training gear
  10. Save 30 percent on select Adidas apparel
  11. Save up to 50 percent on select Callaway Golf products
  12. Skywalker Trampolines Jump N' Dunk Trampoline with safety enclosure and basketball hoop, 8-feet, only $119.99
  13. Save 30 percent on the Sportstuff 1030 Adventure Stand Up Paddleboard with accessories
  14. Save 25 percent or more on AmazonBasics – from office products to outdoor gear
  15. Get 20 percent back on thousands of items with an Amazon Prime credit card including select Disney Pixar Cars toys, select Thule jogging strollers and luggage, and select Yamaha musical instruments
  16. Save up to 50 percent on grocery items by Amazon, including Wickedly Prime and Happy Belly products
  17. Save 25 percent on Salt and Pepper Grinder Set from Willow &amp; Everett
  18. Save 20 percent on 6-Pack of Assorted Natural Chewing Gum from Simply Gum
  19. Save 35 percent on Mo+M Designer Cotton Baby Carrier from Mother’s on the Move
  20. Save 20 percent on 12-month Banner Cutout from Handmade Artisan Confetti Momma
  21. Save 20 percent off handmade from Kahili Creations

Roth 401(K) Better Than Traditional 401(K)

MoneyTipsIs a Roth 401(k) preferable to a traditional 401(k)? Generally, that depends on tax rates and whether you prefer to pay taxes as you contribute in your working years or as you withdraw funds in retirement. Roth 401(k) plans are created with after-tax funds, while traditional 401(k) plans are funded through pre-tax dollars. By choosing a Roth 401(k) and paying your taxes upfront, the savings in your account grow tax-free, and once you have held the account for at least five years and are past age 59-½, your withdrawals are also tax-free. Withdrawals from traditional 401(k) plans are taxed as ordinary income upon retirement. Harvard Business School researchers found that Roth 401(k) accounts produce greater purchasing power in retirement than traditional 401(k) programs because of basic human nature – people's tendency to use rules of thumb when determining their retirement contributions. Contributions are often made in terms of percentages or dollar targets, and a flat savings rate makes a huge difference when considering pre-tax vs. post-tax dollars. Let's assume that you are maxing out your 401(k) at the current limit of $18,000 annually (and that you haven't reached age fifty yet to allow a $6,000 catch-up contribution). With a Roth 401(k), that $18,000 contribution will still be worth $18,000 at retirement. With a traditional 401(k), that $18,000 contribution is only worth $18,000 minus whatever tax rate applies at retirement. To think about it another way: If you are contributing $18,000 to a Roth 401(k), you are indirectly contributing more than $18,000 toward your retirement because you are also paying the taxes on those funds in that same year. This advantage could be partially neutralized by future tax rates. If you are in a high tax bracket now, your tax bracket in retirement is likely to be significantly lower – thus the taxes you pay now by contributing to a Roth 401(k) are greater than the taxes you will pay upon withdrawal. Lead study author John Beshears gives the following example in an interview with the Wall Street Journal: Assume an annual $5,000 contribution to a 401(k) for forty years until retirement, with a 5% return. The balance will be $600,000 at retirement. At a 20% tax rate – not unreasonable upon retirement – the spending power is reduced to $480,000. With a Roth 401(k), the spending power of that nest egg is still $600,000. While the Harvard study finds that Roth 401(k)s tend to result in greater purchasing power, that doesn't mean that you should dismiss a traditional 401(k). If you are maxing out your 401(k), a Roth is clearly a better choice – but otherwise, you can simply adjust the contribution amount to a traditional 401(k) upward to account for anticipated taxes at retirement, and gain the further tax advantage of lowering your taxable income during your working years. Depending on your employer's plan, you may be able to hedge your bets. Some employer plans allow you to have a traditional 401(k) and a Roth 401(k) simultaneously – but your total contributions are still capped at the annual limit. You may be able to alternate annual contributions between the two accounts, or possibly divert an annual percentage to each account. The cost/benefit calculations are not straightforward and require some assumptions on growth, inflation, and tax rates. We advise running scenarios on your preferred retirement scenarios using online calculators – or, better still, seek the advice of a financial professional who can address your retirement goals and lay out your best options in an understandable way. Let the free Retirement Planner by MoneyTips help you calculate when you can retire without jeopardizing your lifestyle. Photo ©iStockphoto.com/marioaguilarOriginally Posted at: https://www.moneytips.com/roth-401k-better-than-traditional-401kTop 6 Things to Do for Your Retirement at Age 50The Biggest Retirement Mistake is Complacency5 Common Mistakes in Retirement Investments

5 things you didn’t know about Amazon

Both old and new Amazon Prime users are gearing up for the much-anticipated Amazon Prime Day deals launching Monday night.

» RELATED: Amazon Prime Day 2017: When is it; what's on sale? 

As you take advantage of the biggest bargains from the multi-million dollar company’s sale of the year, take a look back at its humble beginnings.

>> Read more trending news

Here are five things you probably didn’t know about Amazon:

1. It began in a garage.

Like many big companies and hit bands that once started in a college dorm room or basement, Amazon’s humble beginnings originated in the garage of Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos.

» RELATED: 7 hidden perks of Amazon Prime you probably never knew about 

2. It was originally called “Cadabra.”

Yes, as in “Abracadabra.” But as soon as people began confusing “Cadabra” with “cadaver,” that name went out the window.

Bezos instead chose “Amazon.com,” to suggest something of a large scale.

3. When it went live, it only sold books.

Amazon.com wasn’t always “Amazonian.” When it went live, it actually only sold books. But now, Amazon.com sells everything from electronics to apparel to groceries.

» RELATED: Need a job? Stay at home and work for Amazon 

4. Every time a purchase was made, a bell would ring in the company office.

This humble tradition of the most popular online store in the U.S. is no longer.

5. In 2012, a web services crash cost the company millions of dollars.

Amazon’s web services went down for an hour in October 2012, mainly affecting eastern states. This cost the company millions of dollars.

Read more about the crash here.

» RELATED: Amazon to buy Whole Foods for $13.7 billion

Save Money By Making Internet Shopping Harder

MoneyTipsFor years, shopaholics had to battle against the ease and convenience of late-night TV ads. Their classic pitches led thousands of people to buy items that they did not need, all available with a simple phone call. The advent of 24-hour shopping channels like QVC and the Home Shopping Network made it even easier to spend yourself into bankruptcy. Then, the Internet arrived. Internet shopping allows you to search for any item you can think of and purchase it online with a simple click of the button and entry of a credit card — or just the simple click if your payment information is already on record. Even browsing the Internet with no intention to buy can turn into a shopping spree if you run across items that you "simply cannot do without." What's a shopaholic to do? The first order of business is to admit that you have a problem with impulse shopping on the Internet. After that, it is a matter of setting up minor roadblocks to make Internet shopping more difficult without taking drastic measures like closing your credit card accounts. Consider these measures that will slow down the process and give you time to reconsider whether or not you really need that customized bowling ball or package of thirty smartphone covers. Do not Store Information – Most sites encourage you to store your basic information so that they can expedite the checkout process — especially your shipping and credit card information. Your browser is probably set to autofill the information into most forms. Disable the autofill capability of your browser and decline to store credit cards and other information online. It will take you several minutes to enter that information, which may be enough time to talk yourself out of the purchase. Budget your Small Purchases – Apps for mobile devices are so cheap that it is easy to make impulse buys without thinking how quickly small purchases add up. That is also true for music purchases through iTunes, or other similarly inexpensive downloadable items. Set yourself a budget by using a prepaid gift/credit card and use it to budget small app and download purchases. Load it at the beginning of the month with your budgeted amount and track the balance during the month. You may run out in the first month, but with time, you will learn to track your spending and get in the habit of controlling your purchases throughout the month. Pause Before Checkout – Websites give you the opportunity to review your basket before purchase to make sure that all the details are correct. Take a set amount of time (perhaps five to 10 minutes) to leave the items in your checkout basket and simply walk away from the computer. If you still want the items when you return to the computer, go ahead — but at least you will have had some time to think about it. Block Sites – If nothing else works, try blocking sites at various times during the day when you are most vulnerable to impulse purchases. Programs like StayFocusd or Leechblock can allow you to block websites temporarily and save you from draining out your bank account. We hope that these tips can help you from maxing out your credit cards with Internet impulse buys. If not, you may want to shop exclusively at stores with liberal return policies. At least, then there’s a chance you’ll have come to your senses by the time the now-unwanted purchase arrives. If you want more credit, check out MoneyTips' list of credit card offers. Photo ©iStockphoto.com/Catalin205 Originally Posted at: https://www.moneytips.com/save-money-by-making-internet-shopping-harderBest Online Store Return PoliciesWackiest "Of The Month" ClubsToday’s Headlines: Online Shopping Surpasses In-Store

Cookie store employee suspended after buying brownie for police officer reinstated

A Texas cookie store employee who was suspended after he paid for a brownie for a police officer will be reinstated.

>> Watch the news report here

According to KRIV, Zachary Randolph, 18, works at Great American Cookies at Katy Mills Mall in Katy, Texas. But his employment was in jeopardy for a few days after a moment of generosity on the job.

Last Sunday, a police officer reportedly came to Great American Cookies and ordered a brownie, a $2.75 purchase. Randolph offered to pay for the officer’s brownie with his own money. The police officer thanked him and walked away.

It was the conduct of the next family in line that reportedly got Randolph in trouble. When they approached the counter, they asked if Randolph would be paying for their orders, too. In a viral Facebook post, Randolph’s mother, Tami Kurtz Randolph, said her son’s job was threatened and he was accused of being racist:

>> See the post here

The next day, Randolph was summoned to a meeting with his manager and upper manager, his mother wrote. She said that while upper management supposedly wanted him fired for the incident, his direct manager would not fire him, saying he was a good worker and under consideration for management at the time of the incident, 

They issued Randolph a warning and a one-week suspension, his mother said. Not everyone agreed with the action.

“A lot of people I know my age don’t support police officers. I don’t think it’s fair,” he told KRIV.

But things were about to change again. As the story got more attention, Great American Cookies executives reversed the decision. Biju George, the owner and operator of the Katy Mills Great American Cookies, issued this statement:

>> Read more trending news

"On behalf of Great American Cookies Katy Mills, we owe the employee an apology. It was never an issue that he purchased a brownie for a police officer, but rather the events that unfolded with another customer in line at the time. However, after further review, we realize that the employee was in fact in the right and we continue to reach out to him and his mom to issue an apology. The corrective action and suspension was reversed immediately and we hope to connect with him today."

In an emailed statement to the Houston Chronicle, Great American Cookies Executive Vice President David Kaiser wrote:

"Great American Cookies proudly supports Law Enforcement, First Responders and all who serve our country. ... Though our stores are independently managed and operated, when the situation first arose, we reached out to the franchisee to ensure that the situation was addressed and handled appropriately."

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