Easing Homebuyer Burdens

first_imgHome / Daily Dose / Easing Homebuyer Burdens  Print This Post Demand Propels Home Prices Upward 2 days ago Data Provider Black Knight to Acquire Top of Mind 2 days ago 2019-04-12 Seth Welborn Previous: Wells Fargo, JPMorgan Chase Weigh In on Bank Performance Next: Citadel Servicing Corporation Releases Q1 Report Seth Welborn is a Reporter for DS News and MReport. A graduate of Harding University, he has covered numerous topics across the real estate and default servicing industries. Additionally, he has written B2B marketing copy for Dallas-based companies such as AT&T. An East Texas Native, he also works part-time as a photographer. About Author: Seth Welborn Share Save Subscribe April 12, 2019 1,056 Views Demand Propels Home Prices Upward 2 days ago The Best Markets For Residential Property Investors 2 days ago Data Provider Black Knight to Acquire Top of Mind 2 days ago Related Articles Servicers Navigate the Post-Pandemic World 2 days ago Easing Homebuyer Burdens The Week Ahead: Nearing the Forbearance Exit 2 days ago Governmental Measures Target Expanded Access to Affordable Housing 2 days ago The Best Markets For Residential Property Investors 2 days ago Servicers Navigate the Post-Pandemic World 2 days ago in Daily Dose, Featured, Market Studies, News With the standard tax deduction raised by almost double and deductions on real estate taxes more limited following the tax code changes, homeowners probably won’t worry as much about their taxes when buying a home. In this video spotlight, realtor.com Chief Economist Danielle Hale discusses how the 2019 tax code will impact homebuying decisions.”There are a coupe of other changes that are impactful, but the bottom line is the same,” said Hale. “Fewer people will itemize on their tax deductions, which means taxes won’t be a very important factor for most homebuyers when they’re thinking about whether to rent or own.”It doesn’t mean people will stop wanting to own a home, taxes are just one reason people might decide to own a home,” Hale continued. “But it does mean for most people, taxes aren’t going to be an important deciding factor like they maybe were before.”While taxes may not be on homebuyer’s radar, following the recent U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics Employment Situation Summary, Hale commented on how job growth as well as mortgage rates have impacted purchasing power.”The combination of earnings growth of 3.2 percent and low mortgage rates has boosted home buyers’ purchasing power in the face of rising home prices, but affordability remains a challenge, especially for entry-level buyers,” said Hale. “Still, as buyers grapple with their budgets, job and earnings growth and lower mortgage rates suggest sufficient demand for sellers this spring.”Volume 90%Press shift question mark to access a list of keyboard shortcutsKeyboard ShortcutsEnabledDisabledPlay/PauseSPACEIncrease Volume↑Decrease Volume↓Seek Forward→Seek Backward←Captions On/OffcFullscreen/Exit FullscreenfMute/UnmutemSeek %0-9Auto1080p720p406p270p180pLive00:0001:1701:17  Sign up for DS News Daily Governmental Measures Target Expanded Access to Affordable Housing 2 days agolast_img read more

U.S. EPA Reversal Won’t Save San Antonio Coal Plant

first_img FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享San Antonio Business Journal:The Trump administration’s abolishment of the Clean Power Plan will not save a coal-fired power plant slated for closure in San Antonio.The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has terminated the Obama administration’s Clean Power Plan, EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt announced on Monday. Implemented in August 2015, the state-based plan had an ambitious goal of reducing U.S. carbon emissions by 32 percent by 2030. While environmentalists decried the Trump administration’s decision and threatened lawsuits, San Antonio’s city-owned utility company CPS Energy said the EPA’s decision does not affect its plans to decommission the coal-fired Deely Power Plant by the end of 2018. The San Antonio-based utility company is however, planning to keep the neighboring coal-fired Spruce Power Plant in operation.Once considered to be the cheapest source of generating electricity, coal is one of the most polluting and has now become more expensive than natural gas and wind power, thanks to the shale revolution and technological innovations in renewable energy.CPS Energy, meanwhile, remains committed to reducing its carbon footprint and plans to replace Deely’s aging generators with a modern natural gas plant, CEO Paula Gold-Williams said Monday in a statement.“While regulations may change over time, our focus will always remain on creating value for our customers and community, executing smart economic decisions and making San Antonio a better place to live,” Gold-Williams said.More: Death of Clean Power Plan won’t save San Antonio coal plant slated for closure U.S. EPA Reversal Won’t Save San Antonio Coal Plantlast_img read more

Women and Peacekeeping Missions

first_img In a remote corner of an African country experiencing conflict, government forces abuse a 14-year-old girl. Who would the young woman be more likely to talk to about the incident and give names to: a man or woman? Elsewhere in the same country, UN forces are attacked at night, but during daytime, the situation seems completely normal. In other words, there are armed groups that operate chiefly at night. The elderly women probably have detailed insight into the village’s movements. Who is the best person to seek them out and gather information: a young male officer or a young woman who will interact with them and earn their trust? Women as representation versus women who contribute capabilities Uruguay deployed a significant number of women in the peacekeeping contingents for the Sinai peacekeeping mission in the 1980s. The measure allowed Uruguay to meet the “female representation” requirement. However, this meant that female personnel were often relegated to secondary roles in the mission, since they were deployed to be present and represent their gender but not act. Today, almost 40 years later, women in the Uruguayan Armed Forces fully undertake a wide range of difficult tasks on equal footing with men. And it should also be noted that experience in the most diverse theaters of operations confirms the unique ability of female service members to interact with local communities. To put a rather complex interaction into simple terms, let’s consider two examples: By Uruguayan Army Colonel Roque García May 03, 2018 United Nations (UN) peacekeeping missions are complex environments in which to live. Usually, they are located in armed conflict areas where the international community sends uniformed men and women to stabilize the situation, and pave the way for political negotiations for a nonviolent path out of the conflict. Uruguay has a proven track record on peacekeeping missions that predates the creation of the UN. In the 1930s, a team from the Uruguayan military deployed after the Chaco War [between Bolivia and Paraguay] to ensure a successful peacebuilding process. But peacekeeping missions truly took off after the Cold War ended, when it became easier to build consensus within the Security Council. Uruguayan troops deployed to Cambodia, Mozambique, Angola, Congo, and Haiti and carried out missions assigned to them with honor and dedication. Today, Uruguay is the proud recipient of multiple distinctions for its professionalism under difficult circumstances. The success of this South American nation in such faraway lands is, without question, closely tied to the idiosyncrasies of our republic, our education based on Varela’s reforms [José Pedro Varela was president of Uruguay in the late 19th century], and our humane approach to terrible conflicts. Women’s participation to peacekeeping operations proved useful and valuable, a fact numerous studies backed up. As such, the UN launched a campaign in 2017 asking member states whose troops participate in peacekeeping missions to increase the percentage of women deployed to 15-20 percent of their total. This represents a true challenge for Uruguay. The Uruguayan Armed Forces only deploy personnel on peacekeeping missions on a voluntary basis. To reach these levels of effective participations, the yearly number of female volunteers in conflict areas would have to increase significantly. How to achieve this? Uruguay attempted to tackle the problem of increasing female participation in peacekeeping missions. We believe this will only be possible if we take the proper approach based on three key pillars: Deploying women based on their capabilities rather than to meet targets for representation. Deploying women because they are truly needed in the operations and not because it’s politically correct. Understanding that it’s a social issue and should be handled accordingly. These two examples show how women in uniform bring unique capabilities to peacekeeping operations. Obviously, female personnel need preparation to understand the customs, culture, and operational context in which they are to interact. Their unique contribution is not merely limited to interacting with local communities. In other internal matters, mixed-gender teams ensure better operational performance. Political correctness versus operational necessity The mere quest for political correctness has at least two flaws when it comes to achieving real change in complex structures with long historical traditions, such as the armed forces. The first flaw is that what might be correct in a political setting may not be as such in another setting or must be approached differently. The second problem is that political correctness often fizzles out as wishful thinking without concrete results. Fanciful proclamations about the role of women that are not backed up by specific steps and measures will not change reality or will amount to nothing more than women holding positions just to meet gender quotas. If, on the other hand, the specific capabilities that make women assets to an organization are identified, the organization itself will press for their inclusion. For example, no one disputes the fact that a battalion must have a proper medical support team upon deployment. Medical capabilities are vital, and both the organization and its members not only support them, but require them. This paradigm shift is obviously linked to recognizing, identifying, and improving the unique capabilities that women bring to peacekeeping operations. Women in peacekeeping operations: everyone’s concern Women’s impact on the communities they interact with is enormous and countless. The simple fact that young men and women in vulnerable areas see female personnel in leadership positions sparks real and undeniable questions about the roles society imposes on gender. Ideologies that intrinsically underestimate women are exposed to the fact that there are other ways to organize society—and that those ways are particularly successful. The blue helmets come to build peace, and women among them play a key role. But there is also an important social impact on communities that deploy military personnel on peacekeeping missions. How do Uruguayan men and women handle the most important stress factors, which are ever-present on peacekeeping missions, such as physical risks, separation from loved ones, and the day-to-day life of a group of people in a remote place? The answer to this question also puts into question the way men and women relate, and helps reconstruct that relationship. It’s essential to reiterate the role society plays in this initiative, both in missions and in Uruguay. Only by understanding this social value can we turn an initiative into a public policy that receives society’s full support. If society doesn’t stand behind it, it simply will not succeed.last_img read more

This is not the experience you should give a member

first_img 4SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr,Bryan Clagett Bryan is on the executive team and singularly focused on driving revenue growth through a variety of new initiatives that help financial services and fintech become ever more relevant to … Web: https://www.strategycorps.com Details First of all, let me make this very clear up front. The experience I am about to describe involved a bank, not a credit union. That said, it could very much have been your credit union.Here’s my story.I have been with a large Virginia based bank since 2004 when my then realtor suggested I use the bank for a bridge loan. I was selling a house in New Jersey for much more than the house I was buying in Virginia. The process was easy and the transaction was flawless. Best yet, I only needed the bridge for about 45 days.Fast forward to August 2018. Now that my wife and I enjoy the freedom of an empty nest, we have decided to move across town to be closer to her parents. We found the perfect home for us and made a low ball offer under the assessed value. To our surprise and delight, after a small counter, we agreed to a purchase price and closing date. Now we needed to sell our existing home of 14 years, which we now own outright.At the start of our search, we determined that we would not likely time things well and would need time to do some things to make our current home better positioned for sale. Our plan was to take the equity in the existing home and use that to “bridge” the difference between the new home and the cash we planned to provide at closing. With great hope, off to our “banking partner,” my wife went, with hopes of securing a quick HELOC credit increase.At the local branch, my wife approached her trusty banking partner that she often sees. They know each other by first name. My wife explained the situation, detailed the plan and explained how after the sale of our existing home, we’d actually have excess cash. Our banker friend said a HELOC seemed to make great sense. After that, things turned ugly.My wife was handed a gloss covered brochure style HELOC application and told to take it home to complete. She brought it home and I was dismayed. How is it that my “banking partner” couldn’t start the application process in the branch? Afterall, we already had an old, small HELOC with the same bank. Now we were expected to have to enter all the data the bank already had on file for us onto a piece of paper that was so small, we could hardly read our own handwriting. Surely they could have started the application in the branch by pre-populating the obvious such as applicant name, address, and account numbers. Why was I, the customer, doing them an administrative favor?We were told we could mail the application back or return it to the branch so it could be routed to the banks real estate lending group, 100 miles away. I was dumbfounded by such an analog approach. My personal information was going to be in some persons interoffice mail pouch touring the Commonwealth of Virginia. What could possibly go wrong? Plenty. Reluctantly, we moved forward.A few days passed and my wife received a call stating we’d need to prepare tax records as evidence of our annual earnings for the past three years. Keep in mind that since 2009 my paycheck has been deposited electronically every two weeks. I also have quarterly investment dividends that have gone into checking via ACH since 2006. Looking at internal data would have shown that my average money market balance for the past 12 months was enough to cover about 50% of the bridge. Additionally, they wanted us to disclose any credit cards or loans we had outstanding. Wait a minute! I had just received a Lifelock alert telling me the bank had pulled a credit report. So why did I need to manually provide an outline of my credit cards? My credit report showed a very high credit score and I carry no card debt.We started second-guessing our decision to go the route of a HELOC. And that’s when things turned even uglier. We were told it could be weeks before an appraiser could make it to our home. This would impact when we listed our house for sale as we were told we could not list the house prior to arranging the line. Why was an appraisal visit even needed when it was painfully clear that the HELOC amount was substantially lower than the tax assessment and similar recent sales? I get it; there are banking laws and regulations involved here, but the communication was horrific.At this point, we decided to call our financial advisor to discuss some plan B options. One option was to borrow against our investment portfolio. Doing so would be a little more pricey from a rate perspective, but there were no upfront fees associated with it and no penalty associated with a quick “payoff.” After some quick math and scenario analysis, it was determined this would cost us less than a HELOC.  Furthermore, it could be done instantly “because we have all your financial data already.” That’s when the bells went off in my head. My bank knows nothing about after 14 years of doing business with them.It was then that I decided I do not need my “trusty” bank for this important “life event.” They were more concerned with the standard operating procedure, rather than visiting the length and quality of our 14-year relationship. Fraught with friction and uncertainty at the hands of my bank, I told my financial advisor to move ahead. At that point, he also determined that it was in my best interest to “self-fund” my “bridge” by harvesting gains and losses in my investment portfolio. None of the funds were related to my retirement funds, so there would be no penalty. Once the homes are settled, I can simply reinvest the net proceeds between the transactions, covering my self-funded bridge.My bank completely blew it. They never considered my entire financial picture nor the economics of the transaction. Aside from a huge loss of time, my bank will experience a financial loss. First off, they are not getting the HELOC business from me. But that’s just the start. After 14 years I am going to leave my “financial partner” because they showed me that their process and attempt to move product, is more important than helping a customer conduct a very economically sound transaction.Being a financial partner is very much about understanding the bigger picture. It is about using the data you gathered through a relationship to help a member meet financial goals. It is also about empathy and ensuring open communication, with expectations understood and options made clear.Life is full of opportunities for a financial institution to be a real hero. Or not.last_img read more

Rob Holding rates new Arsenal signings Kieran Tierney and Gabriel Martinelli

first_imgRob Holding rates new Arsenal signings Kieran Tierney and Gabriel Martinelli Comment Unai Emery on Arsenal’s 5-0 win against Nottingham ForestTo view this video please enable JavaScript, and consider upgrading to a web browser that supports HTML5 video Play VideoLoaded: 0%0:00Progress: 0%PlayMuteCurrent Time 0:00/Duration Time 10:34FullscreenUnai Emery on Arsenal’s 5-0 win against Nottingham Foresthttps://metro.co.uk/video/unai-emery-arsenals-5-0-win-against-nottingham-forest-2013038/This is a modal window.Beginning of dialog window. Escape will cancel and close the window.TextColorWhiteBlackRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyOpaqueSemi-TransparentBackgroundColorBlackWhiteRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyOpaqueSemi-TransparentTransparentWindowColorBlackWhiteRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyTransparentSemi-TransparentOpaqueFont Size50%75%100%125%150%175%200%300%400%Text Edge StyleNoneRaisedDepressedUniformDropshadowFont FamilyProportional Sans-SerifMonospace Sans-SerifProportional SerifMonospace SerifCasualScriptSmall CapsReset restore all settings to the default valuesDoneClose Modal DialogEnd of dialog window.‘I’m so happy for him to play and get 60 minutes under his belt.‘I loved having him on the left side of me. He was solid and for his first game back from a double hernia operation you can’t ask for any more than that.’On his own dream comeback, which he marked with a goal in the 71st minute, Holding added: ‘It’s been a long process and there’s been lot of long days in the gym with me and Hector, but I couldn’t have written it any better myself to make that comeback. The way it panned out was just brilliant.‘When I got told I was vice captain I was over the moon, so when Mesut came off and passed the armband over I was so happy. Then it went perfectly again, Reiss put a great ball in and I managed to get my head on it.’More: Arsenal FCArsenal flop Denis Suarez delivers verdict on Thomas Partey and Lucas Torreira movesThomas Partey debut? Ian Wright picks his Arsenal starting XI vs Manchester CityArsene Wenger explains why Mikel Arteta is ‘lucky’ to be managing Arsenal Rob Holding captained a young Arsenal side to a 5-0 win over Nottingham Forest in the Carabao Cup (Picture: Getty)Stand-in Arsenal captain Rob Holding has praised the impact of the club’s new signings Kieran Tierney and Gabriel Martinelli, both of whom starred in Tuesday’s Carabao Cup win over Nottingham Forest.Holding, making his comeback after 10 months out with a cruciate knee ligament injury, wore the armband as a young Arsenal team thrashed the Championship promotion hopefuls 5-0 at Emirates Stadium.Martinelli, plucked from relative obscurity in Brazil by the club’s new technical director Edu, led the line with distinction and scored two outstanding goals, while Tierney, a £25million summer arrival from Celtic, made a convincing bid to make the left-back position is own with an eye-catching debut on his own return from injury.AdvertisementAdvertisement‘He’s been a handful in training,’ admitted Holding, reacting to Martinelli’s impact.ADVERTISEMENT‘He’s a sharp lad and he’s a natural finisher. You saw that header, he’s a small lad and he got up there and won it. He’s impressive so hopefully he can continue with that.‘He’s (Tierney’s) a top-quality lad and he’s a great lift in the changing room as well. He’s a really nice guy and he’s settled in really well. Advertisement Advertisement Metro Sport ReporterWednesday 25 Sep 2019 12:41 pmShare this article via facebookShare this article via twitterShare this article via messengerShare this with Share this article via emailShare this article via flipboardCopy link5.1kShareslast_img read more

New Deputy in Town

first_imgAddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to FacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitterShare to MoreAddThis There is a new deputy in town. Adding to the Alpena County Sheriff’s Office.Earlier this week, Christina Bednasrski took an oath of office, filling a much-needed position at the jail. She graduated from the police academy last month, accomplishing a goal that she’s had all her life. Bednarski started her career in 2012, serving as an army reservist.“I always wanted to serve my country and do the right thing, and felt like it was time for me to step up a little,” said Deputy Bednarski.She then felt the need to serve her community, working as a corrections officer for the jail, and now a Deputy.“I do it on the national level with the army and then to be able to be at home making sure that my family my friends and the community in general is safe is a great feeling,” said Deputy Bednarski.With this new position Bednarski is looking forward to being more involved in the community and juvenile system, helping victims of crime, and helping rid the negative stigma of law enforcement.“I just want to be a part of helping the community grow and making it safer,” said Deputy Bednarski.  AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to FacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitterShare to MoreAddThisContinue ReadingPrevious Summer Camp Registration at Thunder Bay National Marine Sanctuary Currently OpenNext Remembering Tom Scanlanlast_img read more

Andy Murray to face rejuvenated Nadal in Madrid Masters final

first_imgHolder Rafa Nadal looked something close to his old masterful self on clay again as he crushed Czech Tomas Berdych 7-6(3) 6-1 on Saturday to set up a heavyweight Madrid Masters showdown against Andy Murray.Murray moved up a gear from 3-3 in the first set to claim the opener against Nishikori but was a break down early in the second before again producing some stunning tennis.”Against Rafa it’s going to be extremely difficult, especially playing here in Spain,” Murray told a news conference. “Hopefully I can put in a good performance and make it tough for him and see what happens.”Third seed Nadal, bidding for a third consecutive title in the Spanish capital but still searching for form and consistency, edged a tight first set before turning the screw in the second to exact revenge for a straight-sets defeat by Berdych in this year’s Australian Open quarter-finals.Nadal had won 17 consecutive matches against the Czech sixth seed before falling to him in Melbourne and restored his dominance with a solid display that included a series of trademark whipped forehand winners.”I had to play at a very high level today to have any chance and I think it was without doubt one of the best matches I have played this year,” a jubilant Nadal told Spanish television. “This week was crucial for me and the fact that I am in the final cannot be improved on given my situation coming into the tournament,” added the 28-year-old.The Mallorcan is favourite to claim the title after world number one Novak Djokovic decided to miss the event to rest and Roger Federer, who took over from the Serb as top seed, lost to Australian Nick Kyrgios in the second round.–last_img read more

England’s girls retain Home Internationals

first_img10 Aug 2018 England’s girls retain Home Internationals Girls’ team:Charlotte Heath, 16, (Huddersfield, Yorkshire)Ebonie Lewis, 17, (Long Ashton, Gloucestershire)Martha Lewis, 18, (St George’s Hill, Surrey)Mimi Rhodes, 16, (Burnham & Berrow, Somerset)Hannah Screen, 18, (Berkhamsted, Hertfordshire)Amelia Williamson, 18, (Royal Cromer, Norfolk)Caitlin Whitehead, 15, (Carus Green, Cumbria) Women’s team:Lianna Bailey, 21, (Kirby Muxloe, Leicestershire)Georgina Blackman, 22, (Chelmsford, Essex)India Clyburn, 21, (Woodhall Spa, Lincolnshire)Sammy Fuller, 19, (Roehampton, Surrey)Lily May Humphreys, 16, (Stoke by Nayland, Essex)Hollie Muse, 18, (West Lancashire, Lancashire)Nicola Slater 18, (Lindrick, Yorkshire)Full scores can be found hereImage courtesy The R&A/Getty Images Tags: Ballybunion, Girls, Home Internationals England beat Wales 5-4 in a tense title decider to successfully retain the Girls’ Home Internationals at Ballybunion, Ireland.The team’s standout player was Amelia Williamson of Royal Cromer, who had to pull out of last year’s championship with gastroenteritis, but returned this year to take six points from six games.England captain Janet Melville said: “It was a very tight match and the girls played brilliantly. I am delighted that we have retained the title. Amelia Williamson was outstanding in winning all her six matches.” This was England’s tenth win in 11 years.In the first two matches England halved with Ireland and beat Scotland 7-2. Wales meanwhile, had halved with Scotland and beaten Ireland 5.5-3.5.In today’s showdown England won the foursomes 2-1 and this proved decisive when the singles were shared 3-3.In the afternoon, Martha Lewis clinched her game on the 18th for a one hole win over Carys Worby and then Hannah Screen beat Darcey Harry by two holes. Williamson provided the third singles point with a 5&3 win over Ffion Vineall.Ffion Tynan, who had a 100% record from five matches, won the top game for Wales 3&1 against the previously unbeaten Caitlin Whitehead, while Lea-Anne Bramwell and Eleanor Willis, who won the final match against Mimi Rhodes at the 18th, added the other points.In the other match, Ireland beat Scotland 5½-3½ to finish in third place, just losing out on Wales on games won for the runner-up spot.In the women’s Home Internationals, Scotland beat Ireland 6-3 to win for the first time since 2010. England were runners-up, having lost to Ireland 5-4 on the first day, then beaten Scotland 5-4 and Wales 6½-2½.Team captain Elaine Ratcliffe commented: “It was so close. Scotland deserved to win and I am just delighted by the level of golf that everyone played all week.”last_img read more

As Agritourism Expands, Right to Farm Act Protects Farmers, Residents

first_imgBy Gretchen C. Van Benthuysen |FREEHOLD – For people who do most of their daily traveling east of the Garden State Parkway, it may come as a bit of a surprise that Monmouth County has 823 farms sitting on 38,961 acres.Also, that the market value of the agricultural products sold by those farms in 2012 was $84.4 million, with crops making up 80 percent of those sales and livestock 20 percent, according to the 2012 Census of Agriculture prepared by the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s National Agricultural Statistics Service, which is compiled nationally every five years.The idea of living next to a bucolic setting in a metropolitan area may sound like a good idea. But what happens when the farmer’s tractor kicks up clouds of dust or he turns his fields into a corn maze that attracts thousands of cars and people?That’s what the Right to Farm Act is designed to address. Signed into law in 1983, it resolves issues and conflicts between farm businesses and residential and commercial neighbors. The first seminar on the topic was hosted Jan. 31 by the Monmouth County Division of Planning’s Environmental and Sustainability Planning Section at Monmouth County’s Agricultural Building, 4000 Kozloski Road, Freehold.About 70 people attended, including Monmouth County Agriculture Development board members, municipal land use and health officials, owners of preserved farms, beginning farmers and participants in the Grown in Monmouth program.Harriet Honigfeld, from the Division of Planning, explained complaints must first be filed with the County Agriculture Development Board (CADB) or the State Agriculture Development Committee (SADC) before they can be taken to court.The county received more than 20 inquiries related to right to farm in 2017. Some were handled informally or directed to other authorities. Several resulted in public hearings that could be time consuming.She and speakers Brian Smith, chief of legal affairs for SADC, and his associate, legal specialist Alison Reynolds, all encouraged farmers to be proactive with their neighbors and for neighbors to talk about any issues with the farmer to avoid nuisance suits.“CADB’s job is to balance farming interests with nonfarming interests,” Smith said. “Farming can’t endanger public health and safety.”To be a commercial farm, according to the Farm Act, it must operate on 5 acres or more and produce at least $2,500 annually (482 farms in Monmouth County reported more than that in 2012.) Less than 5 acres, the annual production requirement is $50,000. Both must satisfy the requirements for farmland assessment.Approved farm activities include producing agriculture or horticulture; replace soil nutrients and soil tilth; conduct on-site disposal of organic agricultural waste; process and package the farm’s output; operate a farm market; solar, wind or biomass generation, equine activities, and beekeeping.Honigfeld said she receives the most complaints from Howell, Marlboro and Colts Neck for a number of reasons. Many are about business versus farm. Recently, concerns are special events and agritourism (activities that bring visitors to a farm, such as picking fruit or feeding animals).“Some of our farms have been proposing special events that potentially could be covered under RTF regulations, particularly if they are promoting and helping draw the public into being aware and purchasing products grown and produced on the farm,” she said. “I will tell you, since this has been coming up, weddings are not covered under the RTF regulations.”This month, she said, CADB will be reviewing its first request for farm-to-table events using produce grown on the farm. She declined to be specific because the case has not yet been heard.“This is a really big and burgeoning area for our farmers and municipalities, all over the state, in fact,” she said. “But more public interface on the farm itself brings all kinds of issues and questions when you have a lot of people for the evening or afternoon.”She cited health codes, waste water as well as bathroom and parking issues.“These all need to be addressed, but certainly it’s a direction a number of our farmers are looking to take,” she said. “We certainly have a lot of people moving into growing herbs and vegetables and all sorts of things that can be made into a value-added product to be sold and presented to the public.”Elaine Taylor, chairwoman of the Howell Farmers Advisory Committee and owner of Shangri La Farm where she grows organic vegetables, medicinal and culinary herbs on 5.3 acres, said her goal was to unite farmers.“I hope to take all this information and move in a positive direction,” she added.This article was first published in the Feb. 8-15, 2018 print edition of The Two River Times.last_img read more

Baker wins again, this time captures Balfour Ladies Open title

first_imgIf this keeps up the ladies won’t want to invite Cherie Baker to play in any of their tournaments.The Creston golfer topped the Balfour Ladies Open at the picturesque course on the first of September.It was Baker’s third tournament win of the season, having also won the Tournament of Roses at Granite Pointe in Nelson and the Creston Blossom Open.Although this time Baker was pushed to the wall, edging out Mary Anne Gaschnitz of Granite Pointe by a single shot. Baker finished with an 80.Kim Phillips of Balfour took home the low net prize with a 70.Phillips edged out Marg Hopkins by retrogression.Gaschnitz won First Flight low gross while Violet Ward, with a 74, took home the low net prize.Betty Farenholtz  shot 91 to capture Second Flight honours while Hopkins claimed low net.Linda Krall and Barb Renaud shared Third Flight, low gross and low net prizes, respectively while Linda Bobic topped low gross in the Fourth Flight.Norma Boyle won low net.KP Winners were Maureen Elliot and Phillips.Gaschnitz, Farenholtz, Renaud and Kathy Baker were Long Drive [email protected]last_img read more