Statement From the California Department of Veterans Affairs Regarding Inaccuracies in Recent News Articles on the CalVet Farm Home Loan Program

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A response to correct inaccurate information published regarding the CalVet Home Loan Program.

Statement to Veterans Regarding Inaccuracies in Recent News Articles on the CalVet Farm Home Loan Program:

"In light of recent news articles published in the Los Angeles Times (5/14/13 - http://articles.latimes.com/2013/may/14/local/la-me-veterans-20130515) and the Center for Investigative Reporting (5/16/13 - http://cironline.org/reports/california-homebuying-program-veterans-hands-out-few-loans-4515), we wish to correct some inaccuracies which leave readers with a wrong impression of the actual situation.

"First and foremost, the California Department of Veterans Affairs is and always has been an advocate for veterans. We welcome projects that strive to assist veterans in the many facets of their reintegration back to civilian life once they are discharged from military service. The CalVet Home Loan Program is one of only five similar programs in the country that help veterans that would not qualify for loans from a typical bank. This is accomplished without using a single dime of taxpayer money from the State’s General Fund.

"The aforementioned articles both make the statement that the CalVet Home Loan Program is sitting on more than $1.1 billion in available funding. Funding, they state, which can be used to meet other veterans needs. The reality is that there is no money sitting in an account not being used. The CalVet Home Loan Program has only been given the “authority” by California voters to sell bonds, the proceeds of which must be used to help veterans purchase a home. Funds from bond sales are not available until such bonds are sold. We have not sold any bonds recently because the demand for loans has declined, as is the case throughout the entire housing market. Presently, the CalVet Home Loan is a self-sustaining program that is self-funded and does not use any funds from the State’s General Fund to repay the debt.

"While last year the CalVet Home Loan Program only originated $10.5 million in loans, it does in fact currently service a portfolio of $1.1 billion, consisting of more than 7,400 loans. Once originated, we provide on-going servicing on the loans for the duration of their 30-year life. In addition, we also offer our loan holders a great insurance benefit that has lower deductibles and premiums than any policies currently being offered in the general market."

To learn more facts about the CalVet Home Loan Program, contact Jaime Arteaga, Public Information Manager, at 916-657-9329.

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Jaime Arteaga
CA Department of Veterans Affairs
916-657-9329
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