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NEWS
September 8, 2014 | By Jonathan Tamari, Thomas Fitzgerald, and Mark Fazlollah, Inquirer Staff Writers
WASHINGTON - Their missions were admirable: Boost education programs for Philadelphia schoolchildren and provide college scholarships. But according to federal prosecutors and an Aug. 27 plea deal with Gregory Naylor, a longtime political aide to Rep. Chaka Fattah (D., Pa.), the two nonprofits founded by the congressman were also conduits in a scheme using federal funds to secretly repay an illegal campaign loan. The plea lays out a sweeping conspiracy that prosecutors say involves former aides to the 10-term Philadelphia congressman and two charities he has long promoted and supported with taxpayer dollars.
NEWS
September 10, 2014 | By Jonathan Tamari, Inquirer Washington Bureau
WASHINGTON - U.S. Rep. Chaka Fattah (D., Pa.) defended his accomplishments in Congress Monday and said he had not done anything illegal, though he declined to address the actions attributed to him in a top political aide's guilty-plea deal over misusing federal funds. Instead, Fattah said he would focus on the positive work he was doing - including helping millions of students prepare for college and providing billions of dollars in foreclosure relief - and argued that news media should do more of the same.
NEWS
August 29, 2014 | BY CHRIS BRENNAN & WILLIAM BENDER, brennac@phillynews.com, 215-854-5973
WHO IS "Person D?" That has been the hot question in political and legal circles since a longtime aide to U.S. Rep. Chaka Fattah admitted in federal court Wednesday that he lied to investigators to conceal an illegal $1 million loan to Fattah's 2007 campaign for mayor of Philadelphia. A source familiar with the investigation said yesterday the man who made that loan - identified as "Person D" in federal documents - is believed to be Albert "Al" Lord, the former CEO of Sallie Mae, the giant student loan financing corporation.
BUSINESS
September 25, 2012 | By Diane Mastrull, Inquirer Columnist
In the tight-money world of small business owners, the occasion seemed more worthy of a bottle of bubbly than a steaming cup of Honduran dark roast. But java is the specialty of Green Street Coffee Roasters, the 17-month-old South Philadelphia company owned by brothers Chris and Tom Molieri. Early last week, the Molieris were celebrating a $10,000 loan for equipment they had just secured. They were also raising a cup to the entity that made it happen – Entrepreneur Works. It is a community development financial institution, or CDFI, one of a network of nearly 1,000 mostly nonprofit entities nationwide devoted to helping entrepreneurs overcome what stymies so many of them: access to capital.
NEWS
September 1, 2014 | By Craig R. McCoy, Thomas Fitzgerald and Mark Fazlollah, Inquirer Staff Writers
One was a kid from the hardscrabble Abbottsford Homes in East Falls who rose to become a millionaire member of America's financial elite. Another is a foul-mouthed, sneaker-wearing, high school dropout who built a political consulting business with clients who included a long-shot Illinois U.S. Senate candidate named Barack Obama. A third is a hard-driving genius at Philadelphia ward politics steeped in the arcane arts of street money, ballot-cutting, and get-out-the-vote drives.
NEWS
October 10, 1991 | By Suzanne Sczubelek, Special to The Inquirer
The Chester County Commissioners on Tuesday approved giving a $1 million below-market-rate loan to UB Foods U.S. to further encourage the firm to establish a plant in Oxford Borough. Officials from UB Foods, which makes Keebler snacks, told borough residents last Thursday that the firm intends to buy the former Pepsico Unibev plant, which has been empty for three years. The commissioner's action follows a recommendation by the county's Industrial Development Authority, which actually is making the loan.
NEWS
January 12, 1989 | By Jeff Gammage, Inquirer Staff Writer
The Abington school board took less than a minute to borrow $3 million last week, voting without discussion to borrow the money from CoreStates Capital Markets Group. "And not a person here knows what it's for," grumbled Joseph Polya, a persistent board critic who attended the Tuesday night meeting. Actually, the board spelled out its plans for the loan as far back as June. It will go for repairs and improvements throughout the district, including purchase of computers, buses and windows, and for repairs to roofs, tennis courts and sidewalks.
NEWS
March 3, 1988 | By TYREE JOHNSON, Daily News Staff Writer
Philadelphia Sheriff John Green said bar owner Sidney Booker gave him an $11,000 personal loan and then made him an offer he had to refuse. "He wanted a job, and in exchange I did not have to pay back the note," recalled Green. "I told him I don't sell jobs, and after that, he stopped speaking to me," added Green, who took over the 290-member Sheriff's Department in January. Green made his comments after reporters discovered that Booker had filed two suits in Small Claims Court alleging that Green failed to repay a total of $11,000 worth of loans that he was supposed to start repaying on Dec. 1. Booker, owner of the Stinger Bar on Broad Street near Belfield, said he would have no comment until after the suit is heard on Tuesday.
NEWS
November 29, 2012 | By Carl Dranoff
The Inquirer reported this week on the Delaware River Port Authority's role in financing the redevelopment of the RCA Victor building in Camden. As a strong advocate of the Camden waterfront and one of the first developers to participate in its revitalization, I have a perspective that differs dramatically from that of the report. In the late 1990s, when I first saw the RCA Victor building, I didn't just see a boarded-up, vandalized symbol of the blight that had come to define Camden.
NEWS
March 5, 2012
The Consumer Finance Protection Bureau has begun to take complaints about student loans, it said Monday. The bureau will assist all borrowers experiencing problems taking out or repaying a private loan or managing one in default and referred to a debt collector. Complaints may be submitted through 1-855-411-2372; at www.consumerfinance.gov ; faxed at 1-855-237-2392, or mailed to the bureau at P.O. Box 4503, Iowa City, Iowa 52244.    - Alan J. Heavens
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NEWS
September 10, 2014 | By Jonathan Tamari, Inquirer Washington Bureau
WASHINGTON - U.S. Rep. Chaka Fattah (D., Pa.) defended his accomplishments in Congress Monday and said he had not done anything illegal, though he declined to address the actions attributed to him in a top political aide's guilty-plea deal over misusing federal funds. Instead, Fattah said he would focus on the positive work he was doing - including helping millions of students prepare for college and providing billions of dollars in foreclosure relief - and argued that news media should do more of the same.
NEWS
September 8, 2014 | By Jonathan Tamari, Thomas Fitzgerald, and Mark Fazlollah, Inquirer Staff Writers
WASHINGTON - Their missions were admirable: Boost education programs for Philadelphia schoolchildren and provide college scholarships. But according to federal prosecutors and an Aug. 27 plea deal with Gregory Naylor, a longtime political aide to Rep. Chaka Fattah (D., Pa.), the two nonprofits founded by the congressman were also conduits in a scheme using federal funds to secretly repay an illegal campaign loan. The plea lays out a sweeping conspiracy that prosecutors say involves former aides to the 10-term Philadelphia congressman and two charities he has long promoted and supported with taxpayer dollars.
NEWS
September 1, 2014 | By Craig R. McCoy, Thomas Fitzgerald and Mark Fazlollah, Inquirer Staff Writers
One was a kid from the hardscrabble Abbottsford Homes in East Falls who rose to become a millionaire member of America's financial elite. Another is a foul-mouthed, sneaker-wearing, high school dropout who built a political consulting business with clients who included a long-shot Illinois U.S. Senate candidate named Barack Obama. A third is a hard-driving genius at Philadelphia ward politics steeped in the arcane arts of street money, ballot-cutting, and get-out-the-vote drives.
NEWS
August 29, 2014 | BY CHRIS BRENNAN & WILLIAM BENDER, brennac@phillynews.com, 215-854-5973
WHO IS "Person D?" That has been the hot question in political and legal circles since a longtime aide to U.S. Rep. Chaka Fattah admitted in federal court Wednesday that he lied to investigators to conceal an illegal $1 million loan to Fattah's 2007 campaign for mayor of Philadelphia. A source familiar with the investigation said yesterday the man who made that loan - identified as "Person D" in federal documents - is believed to be Albert "Al" Lord, the former CEO of Sallie Mae, the giant student loan financing corporation.
NEWS
August 22, 2014 | By David O'Reilly, Inquirer Staff Writer
The Delaware River Port Authority postponed action Wednesday on a measure that would have allowed commissioners and staffers subpoenaed by a federal grand jury to choose their own lawyers. Pennsylvania Lt. Gov. Jim Cawley, who chaired the meeting, did not explain to fellow commissioners why the item was withdrawn from the agenda. It appeared, however, that the board would have lacked a quorum for a vote because the subpoenaed commissioners would have had to recuse themselves. While the authority would pay for the legal representation, DRPA deputy chief executive Michael Conallen said it was unclear if those under subpoena must use only authority-approved law firms that have agreed to a ceiling on their fees.
NEWS
July 25, 2014
I VOLUNTEER at a correctional institution for women. During one financial-literacy class, I was struck by something that was disturbing two inmates who were scheduled to be released within the next two years. They were worried about defaulted student loans. Once out of prison, they feared that if they found a job, debt collectors would come after their paychecks. They were concerned that late fees, additional interest and other collection costs would make it impossible for them to get out of default.
NEWS
July 11, 2014
SOME GOOD THINGS are going on in the economy these days. Just like temperatures across the country, the stock market has been hot lately. The economy added 288,000 jobs in June. Unemployment dropped to 6.1 percent. Yet plenty of Americans still need financial help, especially with mortgages. We can't lose sight of these people, because they are vulnerable to predators peddling loan-modification fixes. Barbara Floyd Jones, senior manager of national homeownership programs at NeighborWorks America, said loan-modification scams are on the rise.
NEWS
June 20, 2014 | BY JULIE SHAW, Daily News Staff Writer shawj@phillynews.com, 215-854-2592
SITTING IN HIS little souvenir shop on 3rd Street between Market and Chestnut in Old City, Selvadurai Pathmathasan said he's thankful that his "dream business" has stayed afloat. The Sri Lanka native known to customers as Bob, 42, came to this country 15 years ago (first living in New York, then Wilmington, Del., and now Philadelphia). While in the U.S., he was granted asylum based on his being part of the ethnic-minority Tamils, who faced persecution and violence in Sri Lanka, he said.
NEWS
June 20, 2014 | By Michael Matza, Inquirer Staff Writer
Fifteen years ago, fleeing civil war in his native Sri Lanka, Selvadurai Pathmatasan was admitted to America as an asylee. A natural entrepreneur, he invested in a gas station, and several years later used $30,000 in profits to open a mini-mart on Third Street near Market Street in Old City. In addition to snacks, his best-sellers were sepia-toned, Revolutionary-era replica documents. His prime customers: Independence Mall tourists. That was in 2008. "Any business needs time to establish," he said of the decision to open in the teeth of the recession.
NEWS
June 13, 2014
WHEN interest rates go down, many people with outstanding loans - house, car, home equity - start looking around at refinancing options. Unless your debt is a student loan, in which case federal law places you in a different category from the rest of the borrowing public and sticks you with the original loan rate. This week, a proposal to fix that, by Massachusetts Democrat Elizabeth Warren, was defeated in the Senate. The Bank on Students Emergency Loan Refinancing Act was a fine and fair idea, but Warren's bill would have imposed a minimum tax on the wealthiest Americans, an approach that stirred opposition and made it a long shot to pass.
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