Bay County authorities still catching illegal contractors

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BAY COUNTY, Fla. (WJHG/WECP) - More than 50 illegal contractors have been arrested since Hurricane Michael, according to the Bay County Sheriff's Office.

"We're trying to protect all the homeowners, is the purpose of the operation," said Investigator Dennis Rozier with the Bay County Sheriff's Office.

Tuesday, deputies went undercover, busting anyone trying to give an estimate without a license.

"So we're waiting outside the house right now, once our suspect shows up he'll speak to our undercover officer that we have at the scene. When they determine that the suspect has actually engaged in contracting without a license, he'll give me a signal at which point I'll move in and we'll go ahead and take the suspect into custody and transport him into the Sheriff's Office," said Rozier.

Even if someone with a construction group only looks at your home, if they don't have a license, the estimate is illegal.

"Licensed roofing contractors are getting independent individuals to come out and solicit jobs to them basically, they're getting them to come out and look at jobs and write up contracts and estimates, and that's not legitimate," said Rozier.

The end result? A trip to the Sheriff's Office.

While the area is in a state of emergency, authorities want to remind everyone if you're caught contracting without a license, you could face a third-degree felony charge and jail time.

Read the original version of this article at wjhg.com.