Officials: Elevate flood homes
Federal officials are encouraging homeowners in flood-prone communities to consider elevating their homes and increasing their deductibles to cut down on the sticker shock some homeowners have begun to experience as their flood insurance premiums increase.
Congress approved legislation last year designed to put the National Flood Insurance Program on firmer financial footing. The legislation gradually eliminates government-subsidized premiums for more than 1 million properties in flood-prone communities.
The insurance premiums for vacation and rental homes participating in the program increased 25 percent on Jan. 1.
Mercy killer gets probation
An 86-year-old man who carried out a mercy killing by shooting his ailing wife and high school sweetheart in the head was sentenced Friday to probation after an emotional hearing at which family members tearfully spoke on his behalf.
George Sanders could have faced more than 12 years in prison after pleading guilty to manslaughter. The judge, who complimented the prosecutor for being “courageous” in recommending probation, allowed Sanders to walk out of the courtroom.
Judge John Ditsworth said his sentence of two years’ probation was “individualized and tempers justice with mercy.”
Firearms companies wooed
Firearms manufacturers upset over newly restrictive gun laws and proposals in their home states are getting a message from other places: Move here, where the climate is favorable to your products and so are the tax codes.
In New Hampshire, a group of conservative Republicans sent letters wooing gun companies. Politicians in Virginia and West Virginia have said they would welcome Beretta if it chose to leave Maryland. Alaska House Speaker Mike Chenault, in a letter to the head of Magpul Industries this week, said he read “with shock and disdain” reports of new gun laws in Colorado, the home of the firearms accessory and magazine manufacturer. “Though many feel the actions taken by your state government were appropriate,” he wrote, “we in Alaska do not.”
When the debate over gun laws reignited after the mass shooting in Newtown, Conn., in December, critics of proposals to toughen state laws cautioned that gun manufacturers could move and take local jobs with them.
Ice cream shop gets reprieve
The owner of a western Pennsylvania ice cream parlor that also accepted money deposits but paid customers “interest” in ice cream shop gift cards said state regulators are backing off now that he’s changed the name of his banking business and made other alterations.
The Pennsylvania Department of Banking in September wanted Ethan Clay to shut down the community bank he’s set up at his Oh Yeah ice cream and coffee shop, and in November sent a letter warning he faced $10,000 fines for “multiple violations.”