Wednesday, May 25, 2011

County press release: foreclosure help forum at TR library

Public Educational Forum Focuses on Foreclosure Help 5/24/2011

TOMS RIVER – From an overview of the statewide Mortgage Foreclosure Mediation Initiative to information on how to fight foreclosure scams, an informational seminar scheduled for June 16 will provide homeowners and residents with important information on help and resources available for anyone facing foreclosure.

"During these very difficult economic times, keeping people in their homes is imperative," said Freeholder Director Joseph H. Vicari. "One of the ways we can help is by providing good information that can help educate, raise awareness and provide answers to our citizens."

"Foreclosure: Moving from Fear to Positive Action" will be presented at the Ocean County Library, 101 Washington Street beginning Thursday June 16 at 6:30 p.m The seminar is free however registration is required and can be made by calling the library at 732-349-6200.

The program is being hosted by the Ocean County Human Relations Commission with the support of the Ocean County Board of Chosen Freeholders, Ocean County Prosecutor's Office and the Ocean County Library in conjunction with the Union County Human Relations Commission and the New Jersey Public Defender's Office of Dispute Settlement.

Other sponsors include Jersey Shore PFLAG, Central Ocean Rotary, Kiwanis International of Jackson and Ocean County College Office of Multicultural Services.

"Growing concerns over keeping your home can make individuals anxious and vulnerable," said Ocean County Prosecutor Marlene Lynch Ford. "We want our residents to know that scam artists are looking to prey on those vulnerabilities. This seminar will provide residents with tools to make sure they are not victims of mortgage scams and to give them answers that might help them during a difficult time."

Speakers will include Elizabeth Hulse, of the Office of Dispute Settlement, New Jersey Office of the Public Defender, who will provide an overview of the New Jersey Mortgage Foreclosure Mediation Initiative; Stephone Mickler, New Jersey Housing and Mortgage Finance Agency, will address the role of the agency; Elaine Molen, certified personal finance counselor, Garden State Consumer Credit Counseling, will talk about how housing counselors can help; Kimberly Knapp, Ocean County Superior Court, will provide a general overview of mediation and Margaret Anastos, Director of Outreach, state Division of Consumer Affairs, will address how to fight foreclosure scams.

Richard Biolsi, chairman of the Ocean County Human Relations Commission, said the commission thought it important to host this seminar in Ocean County because foreclosure can affect anyone.

"Loss of employment, a devastating illness, divorce, death of a spouse, there are so many things that can have a negative impact on our finances," Biolsi said. "Foreclosure can happen to anyone. We want to make sure people are armed with good information that can help them move from fear to positive action."

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