Category Archives: Money

Military Roundtable

Lebanon Community Christian Ministries

PA’s Water Assistance Program is Here to Help

In Deep Water?
PA’s Water Assistance Program is Here to Help.
Funding continues to be available for eligible individuals and families experiencing financial hardship due to the COVID-19 pandemic through the Low-Income Household Water Assistance Program (LIHWAP). This assistance can aid in maintaining households’ access to drinking and wastewater services essential to ongoing health and overall wellbeing.   Program funds are issued directly to the service providers in the form of grants, or crisis grants depending on situation severity. To qualify for the program, participants must either rent or own their home, have overdue water bills, and meet program income guidelines

“Join the Pennsylvania Department of Aging (PDA) and the Department of Military and Veterans Affairs (DMVA) in raising awareness about scams and exploitation involving veteran benefits.”

pension poaching

There are nearly 800,000 veterans in Pennsylvania and over half of them are age 60 and older.  

Veterans may be eligible for a wide array of benefits from both the Pennsylvania Department of Military and Veterans Affairs (DMVA) and the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (commonly referred to as the VA). One such benefit is a VA pension. 

Unfortunately, there are unscrupulous people who are preying on veterans, particularly older veterans, to profit from their desire to apply for the benefits they earned while defending our country and our freedoms.

Free and safe assistance is available to help veterans and their beneficiaries apply for veteran benefits, including VA pension. PDA and DMVA want to team up with you to help raise awareness of this issue in your community. Together we can reduce the likelihood of scams, fraud and exploitation against our veterans and their benefits!

Click here:

What to Know About Veteran Pension Poaching


The cost of dying in the US approaches $20,000

According to this report at dying is not an inexpensive state in the US.

“We know that death and finances is not a topic people want to discuss, but it is something people should be aware of. Funerals, cremations, and medical costs are expensive and can be a surprisingly large bill.

“We wanted to analyze the true cost of dying in each state based on official data to find out just how much people are having to spend at an incredibly difficult time for many.”


“The national average cost of dying for all states is $19,565.80, this is based on a calculation that is proportional to the average number of cremations and burials as well as the average end-of-life medical costs.”

Read this article in its entirety, click here.

“A Son Turned His Mother’s Story Of Workplace Ageism Into A Heart-Warming Documentary With A Message” – Forbes

biggest adventure“Despite struggling for three years to find work, Rebecca Danigelis is learning to enjoy life–thanks to her filmmaker son.” –  SIAN-PIERRE REGIS

by Sheila Callaham

“Sian-Pierre Regis’ documentary Duty Free chronicles the story of his mother, Rebecca Danigelis, who was fired without cause at age 75 from her job as a hotel housekeeper.

“Danigelis had spent her life working in hospitality and prided herself on perfection. While she admits to having seen other people pushed out of the workplace as they got older, she was determined it would never happen to her.

“Until it did.

“On the day she was fired, the first person she called was Regis. She’d cashed out most of her 401(k) to pay for his college education, and when he asked how much money she had saved, the answer was frightening–only $600.

“Danigelis needed another job and fast.”

Click here to read this article in its entirety at Forbes Magazine.

“Living with a disability is very expensive – even with government assistance” – The Conversation

disability epensive“People with disabilities may need larger cars or specially modified ones to be able to get themselves around.Maskot/DigitalVision via Getty Images”

by Zachary Morris, Nanette Goodman and Stephen McGarity

“Edward Mitchell is 34 years old and lives in Jackson, Tennessee, with a spinal cord injury caused by a hit-and-run accident that happened when he was 17. He has plenty of expenses that all Americans have, like groceries and utilities. But to maintain his independence, he also has to pay for home modifications to accommodate his wheelchair, personal nursing care, dictation tools to help him write and adjustments to his car so he can drive himself to work.

“He is just one of the 20 million working-age adults living with disabilities in the U.S., for whom it takes more money to make ends meet because of the additional expenses they face every day.

“In a recent working paper published with the National Disability Institute, a nonprofit organization that works to build a better financial future for people with disabilities and their families, we estimated the amount of extra costs associated with living with a disability for Americans ages 18 to 69 years old.”

Continue reading this article at The Conversation, click here.

“Explainer: How do payday loans work?” – MoneySense

“Payday loans are short-term, high-interest-rate loans that you generally need to pay back within the typical two-week payday cycle. Are these lenders filling a need, or are they preying on Canadians (and Americans) who aren’t able to borrow money from conventional sources?”

payday-loans-900x550Photo by Andrea Piacquadio from Pexels

NOTE: Though this is a Canadian based article, it applies for Americans as well. “The average American payday loan charges an APR of nearly 400%. You can do better.” Learn more at this US News & World Report article.

by Alexandra MacQueen

Captain Cash, Mr. Payday, Speedy Cash and Cash 4 You—payday loan companies market themselves as an informal, cheery alternative to the conventional banking system, one that provides easy access to funds you might need to smooth out small financial emergencies.  

But are payday lenders helping meet a vital need for Canadians/Americans who are left behind by the mainstream financial services industry, or are they exploitative businesses taking advantage of people with few borrowing alternatives?

“What is a payday loan?

“Despite their name, “payday loans” are not actually loans against a future paycheque. Instead, they’re short-term, high-interest-rate loans from a third party (not your employer) with terms designed to coincide with a typical two-week pay cycle. In Canada, payday loans are regulated by the provinces. 

“Usually, you can borrow up to 50% of the take-home pay expected on your next paycheque. The full amount of the loan—principal plus interest—is then normally due in two weeks.”

Click here to read this article at MoneySense in its entirety. 


“Think Your Health Care Is Covered? Beware of the ‘Junk’ Insurance Plan” – Kaiser Health Network

junk-insurance-01(KHN Illustration/Getty Images)

by Michelle Andrews

“Looking back, Sam Bloechl knows that when the health insurance broker who was helping him find a plan asked whether he’d ever been diagnosed with a major illness, that should have been a red flag. Preexisting medical conditions don’t matter when you buy a comprehensive individual plan that complies with the Affordable Care Act. Insurers can’t turn people down or charge them more based on their medical history.

“But Bloechl, now 31, didn’t know much about health insurance. So when the broker told him a UnitedHealthcare Golden Rule plan would cover him for a year for less than his marketplace plan — “Unless you like throwing money away, this is the plan you should buy,” he recalls the agent saying — he signed up.

“That was December 2016. A month later Bloechl was diagnosed with stage 4 non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma after an MRI showed tumors on his spine.

“To Bloechl’s dismay, he soon learned that none of the expensive care he needed would be covered by his health plan. Instead of a comprehensive plan that complied with the ACA, he had purchased a bundle of four short-term plans with three-month terms that provided only limited benefits and didn’t cover preexisting conditions.”

Read this article in its entirety at Kaiser Health Network, click here.

“Medicare premiums, deductibles will Increase slightly in 2021” – AARP

medicare-premiums.imgcache.rev.web.900.518Getty Images

by Dena Bunis

“Medicare premiums and deductibles for Part A and Part B will increase modestly in 2021, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) announced Friday. Standard monthly premiums for Part B will cost $3.90 more, rising to $148.50 in 2021, up from $144.60 in 2020.

“Part B deductibles will rise $5 next year to $203, up from this year’s $198.

“Medicare Part B covers doctor visits and other outpatient services, such as lab tests and diagnostic screenings. Premiums for some Medicare enrollees will be higher than the standard because these monthly payments are based on income. Part B beneficiaries with annual incomes greater than $88,000 will pay more ($207.90 for individuals with incomes between $88,000 and $111,000, for example).

“The $3.90 monthly Part B premium increase is less than had been expected earlier this year, when analyses by CMS actuaries indicated that the 2021 Part B premium could increase by as much as $50 a month for some beneficiaries.”

Read this article in its entirety at AARP; click here.