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Michelle Kennedy keynote airs Dec. 24

michelle kennedyMichelle Kennedy's keynote address from last month's Vermont Statewide Housing Conference will air again on CCTV Channel 17 in Chittenden County: Dec. 24 at 11:45 a.m.

You can also watch the keynote online anytime.

Who receives federal housing assistance?

The single largest type of federal housing assistance is the home mortgage interest deduction.

In 2007, U.S. homeowners received $85 billion through this deduction1. Unfortunately, the benefits of the mortgage interest deduction are enjoyed primarily by the wealthiest Americans. Over 80% of the value of this deduction goes to homeowners in the top income quintile, according to a recent Pew Charitable Trust study on economic mobility.

Grants help prevent foreclosure

The Rutland Herald reports today that the Rockingham Area Community Land Trust and NeighborWorks of Western Vermont received grants to expand their foreclosure prevention counseling programs.

The money comes from the Federal Housing and Economic Recovery Act of 2008.

The article quotes Bruce Whitney, Director of the NeighborWorks HomeOwnership Center of Southeastern Vermont; and Tom Candon, Deputy Commissioner of the state's Banking Division and a VHFA Commissioner.

Record donations for mitten-drive

sylvia white stuffs mittens with candyThis morning, VHFA staff members took part in the Agency's long tradition of "mitten stuffing" to benefit our neighbors at the King Street Youth Center.

Staff donate mittens, gloves, scarves and hats, and fill them with candy before giving them to the kids who attend the center.

This year we saw the highest level of donations in several years, and perhaps ever: 239 pairs of mittens, gloves, hats and scarves.

Obama names next HUD secretary

shaun donovanPresident-elect Barack Obama named New York City Commissioner of Housing Preservation and Development Shaun Donovan next Secretary of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD).

Read Donovan's bio at the NYC Department of Housing and Preservation Development site.

Blog post #200

Friday afternoon, we posted our 200th entry to Housing Matters.

Here are some statistics about the blog's first several months online:

Holiday greetings

believe in home

VHFA's holiday card comes courtesy of VHFA Loss Management Specialist Polly Thibault.

Polly has painted original artwork for VHFA's holiday card for the last several years.

This year, VHFA has "gone green," choosing to send nearly 1,000 partners our holiday wishes electronically.

VHFA "adopts" family for the holidays

VHFA is participating in the Lund Family Center's "Adopt-a-Family" program this holiday season.

The program matches organizations, families or individuals with needy families in the Burlington area that don't have the resources to celebrate the season the way others might.

Affordable housing photo gallery

Our friends at the Vermont Affordable Housing Coalition (VAHC) have put up a photo gallery of affordable housing projects.

Right now, the gallery features Bianchi Block Apartments in Montpelier and the Proctorsville Green Housing Project. Other examples of housing projects created by VAHC members will join the gallery.

Conference keynote video online

You can watch Michelle Kennedy's keynote address from Nov. 18's Vermont Statewide Housing Conference here:

Michelle lives in Chelsea, Vt., and is the author of a number of books about parenting, including "Without a Net: Middle Class and Homeless (with Kids) in America," which details her time as a homeless mother of three.

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