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Compton: Senate, Assembly support Prop. 12, the Veterans' Bond Act

By George Compton
Saturday, September 27, 2008

The Heroes Earnings Assistance Act of 2008 made a much needed change to eligibility for Qualified Veterans Mortgage Bonds under the state's long-standing CalVet Home Loan Program.

Until this act, to be eligible for the lowest interest rate home loans, veterans had to have had active military service before 1977.

The act now allows veterans who served during wartime periods to include Panama, the Persian Gulf, Operation Desert Storm, Somalia, the Balkans, and now Operation Iraqi Freedom and Operation Enduring Freedom in Afghanistan to have access to the same benefits those earlier veterans received.

In support of this program, the complete state Senate and Assembly are supporting the Veterans' Bond Act of 2008, which provides $900 million to California veterans to purchase farms and homes. The cost of this bond issue will be repaid as veterans participate in the program.

The Veterans' Bond Act will be Proposition 12 on the November ballot. I encourage all veterans and those who support veterans to help pass this proposition.

The current CalVet loan limits are $521,250 for loans on single-family dwellings, condominiums, manufactured homes on land, and cooperative housing. The same limit applies to low-cost construction loans. The limit for mobile homes in approved parks is $175,000. The limit on home improvement loans is $150,000.

For qualified veterans who apply for loans within 25 years of their dates of release from active duty and have served in wartime periods including the new dates, the current interest rate is 5.95 percent.

For all other veterans who have discharges under honorable conditions the interest rate is 6.20 percent.

The CalVet toll-free number is 800-952-5626.

Q. I am a sixth-grade teacher and I would like to have some information about Veterans Day for my class. Can you advise?

A. The VA Web site (http://www.va.gov) has everything you need. Directions for information about Veterans Day for teachers are on its home page. There are various programs by age group. Thank you for supporting veterans.

— George Compton, retired Army colonel, is the veterans service officer for the County of Ventura, Human Services Agency. Send your questions to Veterans Service Office, 1701 Pacific Ave., Suite 110, Oxnard, CA 93033; phone number: 385-6366; fax: 385-6371; or e-mail: George.Compton@ventura.org.

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