Journalist @baltimoresun writer artist runner #amwriting Chaplain PIO #partylikeajournalist

Journalist @baltimoresun writer artist runner #amwriting Chaplain PIO #partylikeajournalist
Journalist @baltimoresun writer artist runner #amwriting Md Troopers Assoc #20 & Westminster Md Fire Dept Chaplain PIO #partylikeajournalist

Monday, March 29, 1999

19990328 Baltimore Sun: Home rehabilitation loans offered to low-income Westminster residents By Kristine Henry

19990328 Baltimore Sun: Home rehabilitation loans offered to low-income Westminster residents By Kristine Henry

Home rehabilitation loans offered to low-income Westminster residents

Originally published on Mar 28 1999 by the Baltimore Sun. Article written by Kristine Henry, Baltimore Sun Staff

As Westminster prepares to beef up its housing-code enforcement, the city has begun administering a loan program to help low-income residents fix up their homes.

The Maryland Housing Rehabilitation Program is also administered by the county, but city officials wanted a stronger emphasis on the program. The city recently hired a full-time coordinator to handle the loans for Westminster residents.

"We have a lot of housing stock that's very old and it's tired. It's owned by people on fixed incomes and there are things they'd like to do but they can't afford it, but they don't want to move," said Ray Fleming, the city's rehabilitation coordinator at the Office of Housing and Community Development, which is running the program.

"If a 75-year-old woman is living on Social Security, she can't put a roof on the house herself and she does not have the money to hire someone to do it, so it gets deferred," he said.

The loan program is aimed at people whose income is too low to make them eligible for commercial loans, or people who have spotty credit histories, Fleming said.

"The idea is to finance major rehabilitation projects. You might be talking about things like bringing the house up to code, new roofs, new siding, replacing windows or weatherproofing. Things that improve the livability of a house, not just cosmetic things."

The interest rate varies between 4.5 percent and 7 percent with 20 to 30-year terms. To qualify, a single person must have an annual income of less than $36,000; a two-person household's income can't exceed $41,150.

"If their income is very low, they may qualify for a deferred loan," Fleming said. "They would have no payments due until the property is sold. If they borrowed $4,000 for a roof, we would put a $4,000 lien on the house and the loan would be repaid when the person passes away or when the house is sold."

Landlords whose properties have four or fewer units may be eligible.

Karen Blandford, Westminster's manager of housing and community development, said use of the loans at the county level was low.

"In the last 18 months there were three loans countywide. We believe there is more of a need than is being met," she said. "We want to reach out as far as possible. With a local staff person it's a whole lot easier to do marketing, outreach and work one-on-one with people who need assistance."

Fleming said he plans to scour the city, looking for homes in disrepair and mailing information to the owners. He will also speak to local organizations such as church groups and neighborhood associations. He encourages people to let him know of others who may benefit from the loans but are unaware of them, such as elderly relatives or neighbors.

One of his main goals, he said, is to ease people's fears about red tape. He said a short phone call is often enough to see if a person qualifies and if participation in the program is appropriate. Fleming will also help fill out the paperwork. "We'll sit there as long as it takes to help them with it," he said.

So far, no one has applied for a loan, he said, although there have been inquiries. Blandford said the city can administer as many loans as needed.

Fleming is overseeing several other loan programs. The Special Targeted Applicant Rehabilitation Program is similar to the regular rehabilitation loan program, but is aimed at people with lower incomes. No payments are due until the home is sold.

A Lead Hazard Reduction Grant and Loan Program helps homeowners -- and owners of rental properties with up to 100 units -- remove hazardous lead paint from their properties. There is no income limit for the program.

"Entire neighborhoods will benefit if properties are maintained better and are able to be brought up to code," Blandford said.

"One bad house brings everybody down. We want to strengthen all neighborhoods without displacing tenants, and these programs really do help." she said.

For information about the loans, call Ray Fleming at 410- 848-2261, or pick up a brochure at the Office of Housing and Community Development in the Winchester West Building at 56 W. Main St.

Originally published on Mar 28 1999:

Westminster Housing and Community Dev, Westminster Housing initiatives,

Sunday, March 21, 1999

19990320 My Locational Whereabouts

My Locational Whereabouts

Kevin E. Dayhoff

Westminster, MD 21158


Saturday, March 20, 1999

Commander Kay Church, Receptionist

225 North Center Street

Westminster, MD 21157-5194


Dear Commander Kay,

Oh!, Ah, ummmm, Kay - It seems that I’m lost. Recently, I seem to have been dropped off the office building radar screen - on my head. I’ve gone off to find me. If you should happen to find me, could you please tell me where it is that I am. Right now, I may be losing, but I’m making record time.

Meanwhile, please hold all my calls, should I ever again be found on the County Staff reorganized organizational chart, other than under a rock, face down in Longwell Run desperately hugging a bunny with a clump of unopened resignation letters waded up in my mouth. If Hillary Clinton calls, take a message.

If you should find me aimlessly wondering about the halls of the office building, with a shell shock look about my unshaven face, staggering, stuttering, slobbering and muttering to myself, please direct me to safety; - preferably someplace where chocolate covered doughnuts can be found.

Should you, ever hear a voice similar to mine, disseminating from the close proximity of a pounding sound on the inside a trash truck, would you please consider stopping the truck and saving me from the landfill?

In case I am ultimately ground up into veggie burger and fed to the bog turtles, allow me to share with you what a pleasure it has been to serve under you. Thanks !

Sincerely yours,

Uncle Kevin

Remember Kay, always keep your salad shooter at the ready!!

Carroll County Commissioners, Environmentalism EAAB - Carroll County Environmental Affairs Advisory Board, Art literature of the absurd,

Wednesday, March 10, 1999

19990309 The Ant & The Grasshopper

The Ant & The Grasshopper

March 9th, 1999

The Ant and the Grasshopper, the New PC American Version

Original Version

The ant works hard in the withering heat all summer long, building his house and laying up supplies for the winter. The grasshopper thinks he's a fool and laughs and dances and plays the summer away.

Come winter, the ant is warm and well fed. The grasshopper has no food or shelter so he dies out in the cold.

New PC American Version

The ant works hard in the withering heat all summer long, building his house and laying up supplies for the winter.

The grasshopper thinks he's a fool and laughs and dances and plays the summer away.

Come winter, the shivering grasshopper calls a press conference and demands to know why the ant should be allowed to be warm and well fed while others are cold and starving.

CBS, NBC and ABC show up to provide pictures of the shivering grasshopper next to video of the ant in his comfortable home with a table filled with food.

America is stunned by the sharp contrast.

How can it be that, in a country of such wealth, this poor grasshopper is allowed to suffer so?

Then a representative of the NAGB (The National Association of Green Bugs) shows up on Nightline and charges the ant with green bias, and makes the case that the grasshopper is the victim of 30 million years of greenism.

Kermit the Frog appears on Oprah with the grasshopper and everybody cries when he sings "It's not easy being green."

Bill and Hillary Clinton make a special guest appearance on the CBS Evening News to tell a concerned Dan Rather that they will do everything they can for the grasshopper that has been denied the prosperity he deserves by those who benefited unfairly during the Reagan summers.

Richard Gephardt exclaims in an interview with Peter Jennings that the ant has gotten rich off the back of the grasshopper, and calls for an immediate tax hike on the ant to make him pay his "fair share."

Finally, the EEOC drafts the "Economic Equity and Anti- Greenism Act" retroactive to the beginning of the summer. The ant is fined for failing to hire a proportionate number of green bugs and, having nothing left to pay his retroactive taxes, his home is confiscated by the government.

Hillary gets her old law firm to represent the grasshopper in a defamation suit against the ant, and the case is tried before a panel of federal hearing officers that Bill appointed from a list of single-parent welfare moms who can only hear cases on Thursday's between 1:30 and 3 PM.

The ant loses the case.

The story ends as we see the grasshopper finishing up the last bits of the ant's food while the government house he's in, which just happens to be the ant's old house, crumbles around him since he doesn't know how to maintain it. The ant has disappeared in the snow.

And on the TV, which the grasshopper bought by selling most of the ant's food, they are showing Bill and Hillary Clinton standing before a wildly applauding group of Democrats announcing that a new era of "fairness" has dawned in America.

Food for thought.