FERGUS FALLS MINNESOTA NEWS AND BLOG


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Fergus Falls Hillcrest tops Oak Grove in border battle


Fargo, ND - Jake Isaac scored a game-high 27 points and helped lead Fergus Falls Hillcrest to a 57-46 victory at Oak Grove on Saturday night. Jody Norstedt - Jody grew up in Montevideo, MN, and has a degree in broadcast journalism with a minor in ...

Minnesota Golden Gophers 2015 offensive linemen report


The Minnesota Golden Gophers have quickly developed one of the ...
Redshirt seniors Josh Campion (Fork Union (VA) Military Academy/Fergus Falls, Minn.) and Jon Christenson (Minnetonka High School/Minnetonka, Minn.) along with redshirt junior Jonah Pirsig ...

Brooks, state Hall of Fame broadcaster, dies at 88


Minnesota, and KOTE in Fergus Falls, Minnesota. Brooks purchased KCUE in 1962 and added an FM station a couple years later. He eventually sold the stations to Sorenson Broadcasting in 1981, but stayed in town until moving to Florida in 1996. Go-to guy Dean ...

Magnificent Maestro: Long-time Fergus Falls music teacher to be recognized


Remembered for his ability to instill the love of music with his students, retired Fergus Falls music teacher Jim Iverson will be honored in February by the Minnesota Music Educators Association with their 2015 Educator of the Year award. “I was very ...

College basketball: Minnesota West splits in Fergus Falls


FERGUS FALLS — The Minnesota West Lady Jays basketball team played a gritty game, helped greatly by winning the rebounding battle, to dispatch the M State-Fergus Falls Spartans 82-58 on the road Wednesday night. The Bluejay men, however, found the road ...

Boys hockey: Fergus Falls hands Alexandria its first loss of the season


Fergus Falls’ Tosten Mann scored on the first power play of the ...
Eric Morken is the sports and outdoor editor at the Echo Press and Osakis Review newspapers in Douglas County, MN. Follow him on Twitter at echo_sports.

Editor hired as publisher in Fergus Falls


He is a Minnesota Vikings fan, enjoys exercise he gets from playing ...
We get to continue working with Tim as the Albert Lea Tribune and the Fergus Falls Daily Journal have a close working relationship.”

Fergus Falls man cited for DWI after driving into lake


According to police, about 9 p.m. Saturday, Fergus Falls resident Taylor Ray Perala drove into open ...
North Dakota to the plains of South Dakota and to the shores of eastern Minnesota. For more information about the services we offer or to discuss ...

Fergus Falls man cited for DWI after driving into lake


FERGUS FALLS, Minn. -- One man was arrested for drunken driving ...
stretching from the oilfields of western North Dakota to the plains of South Dakota and to the shores of eastern Minnesota. For more information about the services we offer or to discuss ...

Fergus Falls enjoys artisan explosion


They also ship bread to Minnesota communities such as Morris. Falls Baking Co. also has a satellite store in Battle Lake. To Kromenaker, the success of artisan businesses in Fergus Falls is due in large part to the town’s size. “If we were bigger ...




SPECIAL INFORMATION FOR FERGUS FALLS

Avoiding cyberbullyng in FERGUS FALLS

Cyberbullying is bullying that takes place using electronic technology. Electronic technology includes devices and equipment such as cell phones, computers, and tablets as well as communication tools including social media sites, text messages, chat, and websites.

Examples of cyberbullying include mean text messages or emails, rumors sent by email or posted on social networking sites, and embarrassing pictures, videos, websites, or fake profiles.

Why Cyberbullying is Different

Kids who are being cyberbullied are often bullied in person as well. Additionally, kids who are cyberbullied have a harder time getting away from the behavior.

  • Cyberbullying can happen 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, and reach a kid even when he or she is alone. It can happen any time of the day or night.
  • Cyberbullying messages and images can be posted anonymously and distributed quickly to a very wide audience. It can be difficult and sometimes impossible to trace the source.
  • Deleting inappropriate or harassing messages, texts, and pictures is extremely difficult after they have been posted or sent.

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Effects of Cyberbullying

Cell phones and computers themselves are not to blame for cyberbullying. Social media sites can be used for positive activities, like connecting kids with friends and family, helping students with school, and for entertainment. But these tools can also be used to hurt other people. Whether done in person or through technology, the effects of bullying are similar.

Kids who are cyberbullied are more likely to:

  • Use alcohol and drugs
  • Skip school
  • Experience in-person bullying
  • Be unwilling to attend school
  • Receive poor grades
  • Have lower self-esteem
  • Have more health problems

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Frequency of Cyberbullying

The 2010-2011 School Crime Supplement (National Center for Education Statistics and Bureau of Justice Statistics) indicates that 9% of students in grades 6–12 experienced cyberbullying.

The 2013 Youth Risk Behavior Surveillance Survey finds that 15% of high school students (grades 9-12) were electronically bullied in the past year.

Research on cyberbullying is growing. However, because kids’ technology use changes rapidly, it is difficult to design surveys that accurately capture trends.

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Save Money on Homeownership in FERGUS FALLS

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President Obama and Secretary of Housing and Urban Development Julián Castro visited Phoenix, Arizona this afternoon to put a spotlight on the recovering housing sector.

Restoring security to homeownership has always been one of the President's top economic priorities, and the results are clear -- the housing market has greatly improved since President Obama took office.

The President’s push for new consumer protections and tough enforcement on abuses have given Americans more confidence in investing in homeownership:

  • Home sales are up.
  • Home building has more than doubled since 2009.
  • Home values have risen for the past three years.

But there's more work to do. Mortgages need to be more accessible and affordable for creditworthy families.

That's why today, at Central High School in Phoenix, the President announced a responsible reduction in the Federal Housing Administration’s (FHA) Mortgage Insurance Premium program. The Federal Housing Administration will reduce annual mortgage insurance premiums by 0.5 percentage points, from 1.35 percent to 0.85 percent.

The President’s new proposal to reduce the fees associated with buying a home would help first-time homebuyers save an average of $900 on their annual mortgage payment. More people buying homes would also strengthen the market, helping everyone who already owns a home.

In Phoenix today, President Obama explained that homeownership was a dream that should be open to all Americans. Not only will the President’s actions help numerous families realize the American Dream and get a place they can finally call home, but millions of families will save billions of dollars in mortgage payments in the coming years, helping to support and stabilize the housing market recovery.

President Obama delivers remarks on housing at Central High School in Phoenix

President Barack Obama delivers remarks on housing at Central High School in Phoenix, Az., Jan. 8, 2015. [31]




Avoiding Foreclosure in FERGUS FALLS

The Obama Administration has implemented a number of programs to assist homeowners who are at risk of foreclosure and otherwise struggling with their monthly mortgage payments. The majority of these programs are administered through the U.S. Treasury Department and HUD. This page provides a summary of these various programs. Please continue reading in order to determine which program can best assist you.

Please read FHA's brochure, "Save Your Home:  Tips to Avoid Foreclosure," also published in   Spanish,  Chinese and  Vietnamese.

Making Home Affordable

The Making Home Affordable © (MHA) Program is a critical part of the Obama Administration's broad strategy to help homeowners avoid foreclosure, stabilize the country's housing market, and improve the nation's economy.

Homeowners can lower their monthly mortgage payments and get into more stable loans at today's low rates. And for those homeowners for whom homeownership is no longer affordable or desirable, the program can provide a way out which avoids foreclosure. Additionally, in an effort to be responsive to the needs of today's homeowners, there are also options for unemployed homeowners and homeowners who owe more than their homes are worth. Please read the following program summaries to determine which program options may be best suited for your particular circumstances.

Modify or Refinance Your Loan for Lower Payments

  • Home Affordable Modification Program (HAMP): HAMP lowers your monthly mortgage payment to 31 percent of your verified monthly gross (pre-tax) income to make your payments more affordable. The typical HAMP modification results in a 40 percent drop in a monthly mortgage payment. Eighteen percent of HAMP homeowners reduce their payments by $1,000 or more. Click Here for more information.
  • Principal Reduction Alternative (PRA): PRA was designed to help homeowners whose homes are worth significantly less than they owe by encouraging servicers and investors to reduce the amount you owe on your home. Click Here for more information.  
  • Second Lien Modification Program (2MP): If your first mortgage was permanently modified under HAMP SM and you have a second mortgage on the same property, you may be eligible for a modification or principal reduction on your second mortgage under 2MP. Likewise, If you have a home equity loan, HELOC, or some other second lien that is making it difficult for you to keep up with your mortgage payments, learn more about this MHA program. Click Here for more information.
  • Home Affordable Refinance Program (HARP): If you are current on your mortgage and have been unable to obtain a traditional refinance because the value of your home has declined, you may be eligible to refinance through HARP. HARP is designed to help you refinance into a new affordable, more stable mortgage. Click Here for more information.

“Underwater” Mortgages

In today's housing market, many homeowners have experienced a decrease in their home's value. Learn about these MHA programs to address this concern for homeowners.

  • Home Affordable Refinance Program (HARP): If you are current on your mortgage and have been unable to obtain a traditional refinance because the value of your home has declined, you may be eligible to refinance through HARP. HARP is designed to help you refinance into a new affordable, more stable mortgage. Click Here for more information.
  • Principal Reduction Alternative: PRA was designed to help homeowners whose homes are worth significantly less than they owe by encouraging servicers and investors to reduce the amount you owe on your home. Click Here for more information.  
  • Treasury/FHA Second Lien Program (FHA2LP): If you have a second mortgage and the mortgage servicer of your first mortgage agrees to participate in FHA Short Refinance, you may qualify to have your second mortgage on the same home reduced or eliminated through FHA2LP. If the servicer of your second mortgage agrees to participate, the total amount of your mortgage debt after the refinance cannot exceed 115% of your home’s current value. Click Here for more information.

 Assistance for Unemployed Homeowners

  • Home Affordable Unemployment Program (UP): If you are having a tough time making your mortgage payments because you are unemployed, you may be eligible for UP. UP provides a temporary reduction or suspension of mortgage payments for at least twelve months while you seek re-employment. Click Here for more information.
  • Emergency Homeowners’ Loan Program (EHLP):  Click Here for more information about EHLP assistance provided in your state.
  • FHA Special Forbearance: If you are having difficulty making mortgage payments because you are unemployed and have no other sources of income, you may be eligible for FHA's Special Forbearance.  FHA now requires servicers to extend the forbearance period, by offering a reduced or suspended mortgage payment for up to twelve months, for FHA borrowers who qualify for the program. Click Here for more information.

Managed Exit for Borrowers

  • Home Affordable Foreclosure Alternatives (HAFA): If your mortgage payment is unaffordable and you are interested in transitioning to more affordable housing, you may be eligible for a short sale or deed-in-lieu of foreclosure through HAFA SM. Click Here for more information.
  • “Redemption”is a period after your home has already been sold at a foreclosure sale when you can still reclaim your home. You will need to pay the outstanding mortgage balance and all costs incurred during the foreclosure process.

Contact Your Lender

If you are experiencing difficulties making your mortgage payments, you are encouraged to contact your lender or loan servicer directly to inquire about foreclosure prevention options that are available. If you are experiencing difficulty communicating with your mortgage lender or servicer about your need for mortgage relief, there are organizations that can help by contacting lenders and servicers on your behalf. 

 

Assistance for FHA-Insured Homeowners

The Federal Housing Administration (FHA), which is a part of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), is working aggressively to halt and reverse the losses represented by foreclosure. Through its  National Servicing Center (NSC), FHA offers a number of various loss mitigation programs and informational resources to assist FHA-insured homeowners and home equity conversion mortgage (HECM) borrowers facing financial hardship or unemployment and whose mortgage is either in default or at risk of default.

  • Click Here to log onto the NSC Loss Mitigation Programs home page.
  • Click Here for answers to Frequently Asked Questions about FHA’s loss mitigation programs.

Contact FHA

FHA staff are available to help answer your questions and assist you to better understand your options as an FHA borrower under these loss mitigation programs. There are several ways you can contact FHA for more information, including:

  • Call the National Servicing Center at (877) 622-8525
  • Call the FHA Outreach Center at 1-800-CALL FHA (800-225-5342)
  • Persons with hearing or speech impairments may access this number via TTY by calling the Federal Information Relay Service at (800) 877-8339.
  • Email the FHA Resource Center
  • The Online FHA Resource Center

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