Vermont officials announce help for municipalities with storm-related cash flow issues

first_imgState Treasurer Beth Pearce, legislative leadership, and the Shumlin administration today announced a package of measures that will accelerate highway aid and education payments and allow disaster-impacted towns to defer education payments due to the State on December 1.               ‘A key to Vermont’s successful recovery from the disasters that have struck is the ongoing partnership between State and municipal governments,’ said State Treasurer Beth Pearce. ‘The package we are announcing today recognizes that Vermont towns do not stand alone as they work to rebuild. We must continue to exercise flexibility in our financial planning to provide impacted communities with the help needed to fully recover.’ The financial package includes: ·         As was done in September, the Treasurer’s Office will accelerate local highway aid payments that were scheduled to go out to towns on January 15, 2012. The approximately $6.4 million will be disbursed to towns prior to Thanksgiving.·         The Treasurer’s Office also will accelerate education payments this week to local schools of approximately $125 million. These payments were due to be released on December 10.·         Towns significantly impacted by the spring flooding disasters and Tropical Storm Irene may defer for one-time-only a portion of education payments due to the State on December 1, up to the amount of unreimbursed claims. For impacted towns, payment would not be due until February 28, 2012, without any interest applied. If payments were not paid in full by the February deadline, 8 percent interest would be assessed for all outstanding balances, retroactive to December 1. Currently, State statute requires the Treasurer to assess 8 percent interest on any late payments. Legislative leadership is committed to passing the legislation necessary to allow the deferred payments.              ‘We’ve all been impressed with the progress towns have made in rebuilding their local communities and we also recognize the financial strain they are under,’ said Secretary of Administration Jeb Spaulding. ‘These measures, proposed by the State Treasurer, underscore the State’s commitment to do our very best to provide the assistance needed to enable all Vermont communities to recover from what has been an extraordinary year for storm related damage.’             In addition to Tropical Storm Irene, Vermont communities continue to rebuild from severe storms and flooding that hit the state in the spring.             ‘The legislature is committed to helping communities overcome the enormous challenges these storms have imposed on our state,’ explained Speaker Shap Smith. ‘The goal of this package is to ease the cash flow pressures and take away some of the worries so many municipalities are facing in the aftermath of disaster.’               ‘This one-time deferment recognizes that we all must do what we can to help impacted communities continue their recovery efforts,’ said Senate President Pro Tempore John Campbell. ‘These are unique circumstances that require action now to ensure we continue our remarkable rebuilding process.’             Municipalities will be required to prepare a cost estimate of storm-related damages and certify that they have, or are in the process of making, the repairs associated with the estimate in order to document the amount of education tax payment that will be deferred. The estimate can only include costs incurred or reasonably expected to be incurred, prior to February 28, 2012. If a town has received any payments from FEMA, the Federal Highway Administration, the Vermont League of Cities and Towns Property and Casualty Intermunicipal Fund insurance program, or private insurance, that amount must be deducted from the education tax deferred payment amount that is being requested. Such payments only apply if they are associated with a town’s original cost estimate for storm related damages.             ‘We appreciate the responsiveness of State and legislative leaders to the needs of our Vermont cities and towns,’ said Steven Jeffery, Executive Director of the Vermont League of Cities and Towns. ‘Vermont’s recovery effort is something we all have a stake in. I am pleased that we can work together on proposals that recognize our shared commitment to a full and complete rebuilding effort on the part of all our communities.’Vermont State Treasurer’s Office. 11.22.2011last_img read more

First Time Home Buyers – Free Class, Priceless Information

first_imgCheryl explains the purchase and sale agreement to new home buyers.The Home InspectionEvery home buyer is encouraged to obtain a home inspection to clearly understand the condition of the home they plan to purchase.  Larry Stamp  of Cameo Home Inspection Service provides an entertaining overview of the inspection process, complete with samples of pest damaged wood and other displays to emphasize the potential damage a home can experience.  Larry has written the informative booklet “What if Houses Could Talk” which you can download for free. Real Estate Brokers Real Estate Broker, Cheryl Frable of Real Living  Northwest Realtors, covers the home buying process with new buyers illustrated with a detailed flow chart.  The process begins with finding a broker you like and trust since you will be spending considerable time with them and sharing personal information.  Real Estate Brokers can assist buyers in clarifying their reasons for purchasing a home, learn the pros and cons of online searches, recommend reliable service providers, and guide them through the purchase process.  Real Estate Broker services are typically provided at no cost to the buyer. First Time Home Buyers Class The First Time Home Buyers class is a free course offered by the Washington State Housing Finance Commission which helps homebuyers learn how to purchase and maintain a home.  Upon completion of the course, participants receive a certificate good for two years, which is required for some of the loan assistance programs.Michelle Wickett covers the 8 steps to home ownership with first time home buyers.One such course is taught locally by trained instructor Michelle Wickett of Axia Home Loans.  Michelle informs buyers of their loan options, including the possibility of down payment assistance.  Buyers also learn about pre-approval vs pre-qualification, and the differences between various lenders including banks, mortgage brokers, and portfolio lenders.Michelle has assembled a team of local professionals to assist with the course subjects including a Real Estate Broker, Home Inspector, and Tile Company representative.  These industry experts explain their roles in the home buying process and provide many helpful hints when searching for a home. Facebook64Tweet0Pin0 Free Take Out Upon completion of the First Time Home Buyers Class, participants receive a complimentary packet of information explaining home buying terms, processes, and resources as a reference to the abundance of information received during the class.  They also receive examples of forms and definition of terms to help prepare for the home buying process.Larry Stamp helps home buyers understand the inspection process. Submitted by Dan Martinez, Keller Williams RealtyParticipants receive lots of valuable information guiding them through the home buying process.The young buyers were worried and stressed.  The home they were renting and planning to purchase was no longer an option and they needed to move within the next month.  Fortunately, these buyers had taken the First Time Home Buyers class which I recommended to them, and were prepared to move quickly with their financing in place and a clear understanding of the home buying process.   Within one week, we were able to find a great home and they were able to move when their lease expired. Send Someone to Class Realtor.com recently reported that first-time home buyers helped push home sales in May to their highest level since May 2009 and that first-time buyers in May represented 32% of all sales, up from 30% in April and 27% a year ago.  Chances are you know a First Time Home Buyer who can benefit from this class so forward this article and help them become educated and empowered to purchase a home with confidence.Contact me if you would like to know more about this class or are ready to buy, sell, or invest in real estate.Dan Martinez360-789-4408danmartinez@kw.comlast_img read more