October 2007 Newsletter

October 10: Smart About Money
What financial topics are you most interested in learning about?
We will navigate around the National Endowment for Financial Education's Smart About Money web site: http://www.smartaboutmoney.org/
Take a few minutes to explore the website before you attend and bring your questions.
includes link to The Wealth Care Kit
Financial Planning for Women (FPW) is a monthly educational seminar that meets the second Wednesday of each month at two times: 12:30-1:30 p.m. in Family Life room 318 on the USU campus. Bring your lunch. The same program is repeated in the evening: 7-8:30 p.m. at the Family Life Center, 493 North 700 East, Logan (at bottom of Old Main Hill). The longer evening time slot allows for more discussion. Programs are free and registration is not required. For further information: (435) 797- 1569; jean.lown@cc.usu.edu; http://www.usu.edu/fpw/
Bring a female friend or colleague with you who is attending FPW for the first time and you will receive a thank you gift. Please speak up at the meeting and let us know.
Upcoming FPW programs:
November 7: A Simple Guide to What Everyone Needs to Know About Money & Retirement Free 10 page guidebook. (note date change to the first Wednesday for November only.)
December: no program.
Improving Family Financial Stability in Utah
The United Way Financial Stability Council, 130 community leaders from throughout Utah, has developed innovative strategies to help all Utah families gain financial stability. Utah is a great place to live and raise a family. But we all struggle every day with financial pressures.
“Saving for emergencies is critical—but can seem impossible when living paycheck to paycheck. Rising healthcare and housing costs make it harder to make ends meet. After taking care of necessities, putting money in a college or retirement fund may seem like a dream.
Because the financial challenges we all face require innovative and far-reaching solutions, we have brought together the Financial Stability Council to develop bold, new strategies. This council is made up of more than 130 business, civic, religious and government leaders who are committed to improving the quality of life in Utah.” They need your input! Go to: http://www.uwfinancialstability.org/ to read the proposals and tell them what YOU think.
Follow up on September ID Theft program:
Congratulations to the winners of the paper shredders at the September ID Theft meetings: Janet Shaw Rouse (attending for the first time) and long time participant May Young.
USU Employees please take note.
  1. An FPW participant shared this experience: “I had to scan my USU ID card to get into the HPER locker room. The person at the desk told me that I needed to go immediately to the card office and ask for my Social Security number to be removed. It wasn’t printed on the card, but since I have worked on campus prior to banner, when the card is used, my SSN comes up instead of my Banner A number. He said the card office could quickly change that so my SSN wouldn’t show up. The don’t have to issue a new card, just change the electronic readout.”
  2. Also, in conjunction with the Small Steps to Health and Wealth theme:  The new USU Wellness Center (HPER 109) is now open 6:30-7:30 am, and 11:30 am - 6:30 pm Monday through Friday.
To protect against ID theft and save paper and trees:
  1. opt out of receiving credit card offers in the mail. 1-888-567-8688 or http://www.optoutprescreen.com/
  2. Receive and pay your bills electronically.
Tired of telemarketing calls? Sign up or re-register for Do not call: http://www.donotcall.gov/
If you registered when this was started 5 years ago you need to renew your registration. Once you have registered, your phone number registration will be effective for 5 years. It will be illegal for most telemarketers to call you, and you will be able to file a complaint if a telemarketer does call you.  The website www.donotcall.gov provides information about filing a complaint. You don't have to register cell phones.
News & Resources to enhance life-long learning:
Looking for a discussion on rib-eyes and telemarketers, as well as the subprime market, submarines and sub-par fashion?  If you said yes, then this month's issue of Idaho's Two Cent Tips is for you.  Check it out here
Large file, please allow 30 seconds or more for download.
You can access past issues and listen to podcasts at
Send an email to erickson@uidaho.edu to subscribe or unsubscribe.  It's as easy as that.  We love feedback.  If you feel so inclined, send an email to
erickson@uidaho.edu or lhansen@uidaho.edu.
Luke V. Erickson, Extension Educator
University of Idaho, Madison County
P.O. Box 580, Rexburg, ID 83440
(208) 359-6215 or http://extension.ag.uidaho.edu/madison
View USU’s Dr. Phil Swensen’s Retirement Seminar videos (6 sessions) online
The Center for Retirement Research at Boston College has released a new Issue in Brief: "Medicare Costs and Retirement Security"
The brief’s key findings are: Medicare spending will soar, rising from 3 percent of GDP today to 8 percent of GDP in 2040. By 2040, retirees will face: a nearly 20 percent increase in income tax rates to cover the government’s Medicare contribution; and rising out-of-pocket costs that will eat up more than half of the average Social Security benefit.
These sobering numbers suggest that individuals nearing retirement should aim for an extra cushion to cover health care. This brief is available at: Medicare Costs and Retirement Security
Read The Wall Street Journal Sunday in the Sunday Salt Lake Tribune and Deseret Morning News Business Section or read it online: Wall Street Journal Sunday
Housing and Financial Counseling (USU Family Life Center) workshops:
Saturday October 13: Homeownership workshop 8:30-4:30 Registration required: 435-797-7224.
Smart Money education series for teenagers 14-18 years and their parents.
Wed. October 17, 6:30- 8 p.m. @ USU Charter Credit Union, 198 N. Main, Logan. In downstairs conference room (enter at rear of building). Workshops are free. To register: 753-4080, ext 3400 or moneyteacher@usuccu.org
The USU Family Life Center, 797-7224, 493 N 700 East (bottom of Old Main Hill), provides individual financial counseling. This is the best source for basic money management and getting out of debt. They offer the PowerPay computer debt analysis. Counseling sessions cost $5 for first session with sliding scale charges based on family income and family size for subsequent counseling sessions.
Thanks to the Certified Financial Planner Board Grant for financial support of FPW.