News from the Reference Desk Category: Financial aid

Spanish Language Resources and Tools from the CFPB

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, in 2018, the Hispanic population in the U.S. was made up of just under 60 million people, or nearly one-fifth of the nation’s population. The Consumer Financial protection Bureau (CFPB) has a selection of financial education tools and resources for our nation’s diverse Hispanic and Latino community that are available in both English and Spanish. It recognizes the great variation in the needs, interests, and financial well-being of Hispanic and Latino households. Its resources are intended to be useful for individuals and families during many different stages of their economic life, as they pursue the goals and aspirations that are important to them.

Tip of the Month: New Protections for Servicemembers and Veterans

In May 2018, the President signed new protections for servicemembers into law.  In addition to requiring free security freezes and one-year fraud alerts at the three nationwide credit reporting agencies, this law also addresses a number of key financial issues for the military, including:

  • -Holding lenders to more stringent requirements when they participate in VA’s refinance programs
  • -Ensuring continued foreclosure protections for servicemembers up to one year after they leave active duty
  • -Prohibiting medical debt that should have been paid by the VA to be reported as part of a veteran’s credit history
  • -Providing free credit monitoring for active duty military, including the national guard

Get more information about these protections here.

Are You Ready For Some Financial Football?

Already missing your weekly pigskin fix? Well, you can hang on a bit longer AND increase your financial literacy with this new game from Visa and the NFL! They’ve teamed up to help teach financial concepts with Financial Football, a fast-paced, interactive game that engages students while teaching them money management skills. The fall 2018 release features new 3D graphics and game changing opportunities with audibles, blitzes and game breaking plays. Are you ready for the new game?

Get Help from the Small Business Administration

If you’re a small business owner or entrepreneur with a great idea, you may be looking for resources to help answer some of the many questions you most likely have. Well, the Mount Prospect Public library is here to help–with a little assistance from the Small Business Administration (SBA)! The SBA is the government agency tasked with providing information and programs dedicated to assisting small businesses, and one of the best is their yearly Small Business Resource Guide. Inside you’ll find info on everything from how to start a business and writing a business plan to programs designed to help veterans and native Americans, as well as funding sources. Just click above or HERE to get started, or grab a paper copy from the Business Resource Center behind the Research desk. And if you need help navigating this or other business resources available at the library, MPPL Business Reference Joe Collier is available for one-on-one reference appointments–just email or call the library to set one up!

Investing in Illinois

Did you know that the Illinois Treasurer serves as the state’s chief investment officer? It invests approximately $25 billion on behalf of the state, units of local government, and families saving for college. Illinois State Treasurer Michael W. Frerichs maintains, however, “that we must also invest in people. The best way to do that is to provide people the tools to invest in themselves.”

One way is to capitalize local banks and lending institutions. The Treasurer’s office provides money at below‑market rates in return for their commitment to loan that money to individuals and businesses trying to better themselves and, by extension, their community. Farmers are familiar with their popular Ag Invest program which has provided more than $1 billion in loans over the years. Some homeowners are familiar with the Finally Home program that helps homebuyers who barely miss qualifying for a conventional mortgage. This year, it has added a new program to the portfolio to help small businesses still wading through the ripple effects of the recession. The Community Uplift Program commits $500 million in new money to flow through local banking institutions to help individuals obtain loans at below-market rates to fund business growth or expansion. The program provides capital in a manner that supports community development while meeting primary investment objectives of safety, liquidity, and return on investment.

Currently, 300 lending institutions are qualified to participate. Growing the number of institutions willing to participate in just one of these loan programs will help strengthen Illinois. If you are a business owner, farmer, or potential homeowner, click here for more information. Bankers and other lending institutions can click here.