Financial aid errors cost FSCJ $2.5 million - First Coast News Financial aid errors cost FSCJ $2.5 million - First Coast News

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Financial aid errors cost FSCJ $2.5 million - First Coast News

Financial aid errors cost FSCJ $2.5 million - First Coast News

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. --  After multiple audits, Florida State College at Jacksonville revealed Tuesday that the latest financial audits found that a high error rate was found in the financial aid department.

MORE: Fallout over FSCJ welcome video continues

These errors took place mostly during the 2010-2011 school year, but some did take place in the following year. The errors cost the college $2.5 million.

The base of the issue is the alleged misappropriation of Pell Grants. 

Our news partners the Florida Times-Union reported continuing education programs at Navy bases in Pensacola and Illinois should not have counted toward students reported to be enrolled "full time."

After checking with FSCJ officials, First Coast News learned the students did not receive Pell grants mentioned in the financial audit.

Tracy Pierce, FSCJ Vice President, Student Development and Community Education, said the students from Great Lakes, Illinois, and Pensacola military contracts do not qualify for Federal Financial Aid so they did not receive Pell grants.

Now some students are being forced to pay back that Pell Grant money they received. That's nearly $3 million combined.

During a board meeting held after the news conference about the audits, FSCJ's board voted to raise tuition by 3 percent. The tuition increase was not related to the audits.

First Coast News

Gay Couples Face More Financial Obstacles Than Straight Couples - Huffington Post

By Temma Ehrenfeld
NEW YORK, June 5 (Reuters) - Christel de Vries, a Dutch outsourcing manager for Accenture, sealed her love for her female partner twice, once in 2001 in Amsterdam under Dutch law and again in 2007 in a civil union in New Jersey. Yet under U.S. federal law, she isn't married - and that is creating obstacles in her divorce.
The 1996 Defense of Marriage Act rejected federal recognition of same-sex marriages in the United States and abroad and declared that no state need recognize a same-sex marriage in another state. The conflict between state and federal law - and between states - creates double worlds for gay marrieds in nearly every area of their financial lives.
Last week, the U.S. Appeals Court in Boston ruled that DOMA unfairly denies federal benefits to same-sex couples married under state law. The decision would apply to couples in the First Circuit, where Massachusetts, Vermont, New Hampshire and Connecticut allow people of the same sex to marry.
However, the court put a stay on its decision until the next step in the appeals process, most likely a Supreme Court ruling.
"If this decision is upheld on appeal, it should pave the way for a wide swath of federal protections for married same-sex couples," said Susan Sommer, director of constitutional litigation for Lambda Legal in New York.
But in the meantime, and despite the broadening support from President Barack Obama and others for the rights of gay people to marry, they still face more paperwork and legal issues - and costs - than heterosexual couples.
"A lot of gay couples are getting married because they can, not because they've thought through the legal consequences," said Larry Jacobs, a Rockville, Maryland, estate and trust attorney specializing in same-sex couples. Jacobs often discusses pre- and post-nuptial agreements with clients to sidestep these knots.

When de Vries and her partner separated in 2009, a New Jersey judge ordered de Vries to pay spousal support. But unlike a federally-recognized spouse, she cannot deduct those payments from her federal taxes - costing her an extra $12,000 a year, she estimates.
When their civil union is finally dissolved, a New Jersey judge will issue a qualified domestic relations order that will require de Vries to give her partner a chunk of her 401(k). But federal law governs these retirement plans, and de Vries says her company cannot distribute the money unless she leaves the firm. And her former partner cannot roll any such payment into a retirement account, so it, too, would be subject to taxes.
"I guess we'll have to assume that the discriminatory law will change," de Vries said.

Gay marrieds usually prepare four tax returns. In most states, they file a joint state tax return. Because the joint state return requires certain federal numbers, "you prepare a federal joint return, pull the numbers off it and throw it away," said Jacobs.
Then they prepare two federal returns as singles. That's often a good deal: A higher earner can take more of deductions like mortgage interest and real estate or claim a child and file as "head of household," said Dana Levit, a financial planner at Paragon Financial Advisors in Newton, Massachusetts.
However, since 2010, an Internal Revenue Service ruling has required that in states with both "community property" laws and same-sex unions, gay couples must split their earnings evenly on their individual tax returns.
Los Angeles financial planner Carol Grosvenor and her spouse Marilyn, an Episcopal priest, saw a bump in taxes of $6,000 a year because of this rule, according to Grosvenor.
Confusion reigns. "It's hard to find a tax preparer in California that even understands the rules," Grosvenor said.
Karen Mateer, a Pasadena-based tax, trust and estate attorney, advised a gay couple who moved from California to Arizona at mid-year. "Their taxes were a mess because the rules were completely different in the two states," she said. In California, they were married; in Arizona they weren't.

Thom Johnston and Bob Gould moved from San Francisco to Fort Wayne, Indiana, nine years ago, to help Johnston's mother and to cut their expenses. Selling their San Francisco home allowed them to buy a house in Fort Wayne mortgage-free.
But at the time, Indiana's estate tax law came down hard on "unrelated" heirs, and Indiana did not recognize the couple's California civil union. So they've bought two pricey life insurance policies to cover those taxes if either man dies. "We watch our expenditures carefully for several months before we make the annual payments. They are painful checks to write, knowing that we wouldn't be doing it if our marriage was recognized in Indiana," said Johnston.
That Indiana provision is now being phased out, but federal estate law still penalizes same-sex spouses who inherit property from their partners. Under federal law, a spouse can inherit an estate of any size without owing estate taxes. A same-sex partner must pay estate tax on an inheritance above $5 million, and unless Congress acts, that amount will drop to $1 million on Jan. 1, 2013.
For Mateer's gay clients, she said, "It may mean selling a home or business to raise cash to pay death taxes."
Men and women who are married can give each other money without considering taxes. Between gay spouses, gifts above the current $13,000 annual limit generally incur either a gift tax or reduce the lifetime exemptions before estate taxes apply.

Gays without income and savings of their own are especially vulnerable when a partner dies. They are ineligible for the Social Security "widow benefit," which lets surviving spouses take the deceased's full Social Security payment.
And while state laws typically protect spouses from being cut out of a will, many of Jacobs' gay clients live in houses they won't inherit, he said. In one case, a client was kicked out of the house two weeks after her partner died - by the partner's family. A Maryland probate judge ruled that she had no claim.
Wills and trusts can help clarify and ease these situations, but gay couples get busy with life and procrastinate just like their heterosexual neighbors. "Lots of people with young kids don't do estate planning and it's a nightmare. It's just worse for gay people," Jacobs said.

Straight couples have the right to make medical and financial decisions for each other if one is incapacitated. Washington, D.C., law gives same-sex spouses these rights, but if a same-sex spouse ends up in a hospital across the river in Virginia, a partner could be powerless. So Jacobs creates healthcare and financial proxies for both his D.C. and Virginia clients.
Kat Morgan and Daena Petersen prepared proxies and wills years ago. Morgan, who directs training programs for Hostelling International, and Petersen, a doctor, entered into a civil union in 2001 in Vermont. In 2010, they legally wed.
Now the tight job market is pushing Petersen to consider residencies around the country, some in southern states that would not recognize their marriage.
"We always purposefully did not apply to southern programs," Morgan says, "but the game has changed." After waiting years for a legal marriage, it's a blow to contemplate losing that status.

Santander boss says £32bn from EU to ailing banks could solve Spain's financial woes - Daily Mail

By Daily Mail Reporter


Cash injection: Santander chairman Emilio Botin says a relatively small figure of 32billion would be enough to prop up Spain's ailing smaller banks

Cash injection: Santander chairman Emilio Botin says a relatively small figure of 32billion would be enough to prop up Spain's ailing smaller banks

The chairman of Spain's largest bank said today that the European Union could solve his country's financial problems by contributing 32 billion to some of its most troubled banks.

The comments come ahead of a telephone conference between the finance chiefs of the G7 group of industrialised nations, which fear that Europe's failure to get to grip with its worsening financial position will drag on global recovery.

Emilio Botin, of Santander, said the prospect of a bailout for the nation's government would be 'bad for Spain', insisting instead on an injection of 40 billion euros to such banks as Bankia, Catalunya Caixa and others.

The Spanish government has been trying to come up with a plan to recapitalise Bankia, the country's third-largest bank, after its management requested 15.4 billion from the government in May.

Spain is at the centre of Europe's debt crisis, with speculation rampant the country may need an international bailout.

But Spanish finance minister Cristobal Montoro today claimed a bailout would now be impossible, and the amount of money needed to prop up Spain's troubled banking sector was not as much as forecast.

He did not explain why a rescue would be impossible, but many analysts fear the size of the economy would stretch the resources of existing European rescue mechanisms.

Spain's economy represents 12 per cent of the eurozone's output - twice that of Ireland, Portugal and Greece combined.

Bailout is impossible: Finance minister Cristobal Montoro said that an EU-established banking union would allow ailing lenders to seek help without governments intervening

Bailout is impossible: Finance minister Cristobal Montoro said that an EU-established banking union would allow ailing lenders to seek help without governments intervening

The cost of international bailouts so far amount is 69billion for Ireland, 63billion for Portugal and 236billion for Greece, leading to deep worries about the price of a Spanish lifeline.

Mr Montoro said Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy's government, which took power in December after a landslide election win over the previous Socialist administration, had a mandate to reform.


Evidence that Europe's debt crisis is continuing to drag down world economies pushed stock markets lower today, ahead of the G7 conference call about the crisis.

U.S. officials have said Washington expects more action to strengthen the European banking system in the next two weeks before a meeting of the Group of 20 major economies in Los Cabos, Mexico, later this month.

Germany's DAX retreated one per cent to 5.922, while France's CAC-40 rose 0.4 per cent to 2,967. Markets in London were closed for a second day for the Queen's Jubilee celebrations.

The euro fell back 0.6 per cent to $1.2429.

U.S. markets also looked set to open lower. S&P futures fell 0.2 per cent to 1,271, while Dow futures edged down 0.03 per cent to 12,059.

Earlier in Asia, stock markets rose following a move by Chinese authorities to boost consumption.

Japan's Nikkei 225 index rose one per cent to 8,382 after suffering sharp losses the day before. Hong Kong's Hang Seng added 0.4 per cent to 18,259.03, and South Korea's Kospi gained 1.1 per cent t

He said: 'We had the vote of Spaniards and that is the task they gave us. We understand that our future is in Europe, in the euro. And we should clearly bank on the institutions taking decisions.'

Mr Montoro's comments seemed to chime with Mr Botin's, with the finance minister agreeing that an EU-established banking union would allow ailing lenders to seek help without governments intervening.

Mr Montoro declined to set a figure of how much money the sector would need to cover toxic loans and mortgages, but said the question was where the money would come from - and insisted the EU must make progress on banking unity measures.

As bond markets charge exhorbitant rates to lend to Spain, investors fear Madrid may be forced to seek external aid to finance a bailout of the bad loan-ridden financial system.

A report for clients by HSBC has calculated that over three years the costs of a bailout for Spain would be 365billion, of which 80billion would go towards the banks.

While analysts have priced a banking rescue at between 50billion and 160billion, Mr Montoro said the sum required to recapitalise the financial sector ' not a very high figure, it is not an excessive figure'.

Here's what other readers have said. Why not add your thoughts, or debate this issue live on our message boards.

The comments below have not been moderated.

No rushing please. All those wishing to contribute to the 32bn please form an orderly queue.

"Santander boss says 32bn from EU to ailing banks could solve Spain's financial woes" would go a long way to curing my financial woes as well, where do I sign up for this boondoggle :-)

Give them 32b tomorrow,they will be back the day after for another 32b. It's about time we were able to find out about the private finances of all these so called bankers,I bet they more than equal the country's debt.

WRONG!!! As is teh case with Greece, Ireland & soon to be Italy, 32bn would refloat the boat but the hole in the hull which made it sink in the first place is still there & will simply send it to the bottom again unless major repairs are made....With greece, the jagged rock was the government payroll & pensions obligations which meant the country have been spending far more than they can earn for many years before they fiddled the numbers ("reclasified" debts) to qualify & enter the Euro. Spain, on the other hand has a huge toxic (massively overvalued) property list, a lot of of which comprises of unocupied condo developments used by investment bankers for trading, against which the banks have loaned out far more money than they could ever hold the assets to cover as garantee so when the borrowers (market investors) default, they have nothing to sell to make the shortfall...This has not dissapeared or gone up in value, quite the oposite, the values have continued to nosedive....

Can I have a few grand to tide me over till the next loan,please.

Santander is the worst bank that I have ever encountered, and that is saying alot as the rest are rubbish. Their customer service department is useless. I have stopped all my dealings with them. K.P.

"insisting instead on an injection of 40 billion euros to such banks as Bankia, Catalunya Caixa and others" Botin, you've got more cheek than an elephant's buttocks. The only reason why you want money in the first place is because these banks took bets and lost! Never heard a peep from you and your ilk when things were going well for you did we? And now, because of the banks' greed and incompetence you expect to be bailed out! Here's a newsflash: if you are in business and take a loss you have to eat it. It's called C-A-P-I-T-A-L-I-S-M. Get it!?

he needs it so he can get his bonus

and his BONUS for getting this arranged to put SPAIN further in DEBT


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HK stocks edge up, low turnover points to caution - Reuters

Thomson Reuters is the world's largest international multimedia news agency, providing investing news, world news, business news, technology news, headline news, small business news, news alerts, personal finance, stock market, and mutual funds information available on, video, mobile, and interactive television platforms. Thomson Reuters journalists are subject to an Editorial Handbook which requires fair presentation and disclosure of relevant interests.

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LPL Financial Names Dan Arnold Chief Financial Officer - Yahoo Finance

SAN DIEGO, June 5, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- LPL Financial LLC, the nation's largest independent broker-dealer* and a wholly owned subsidiary of LPL Investment Holdings Inc. (LPLA), today announced the appointment of Dan Arnold as chief financial officer, effective June 15.  In the role of CFO, Mr. Arnold, currently managing director and head of strategy for LPL Financial, will succeed Robert Moore, who was named president and COO on May 1.  Following a three-month transition of CFO responsibilities with Mr. Moore, Mr. Arnold will report to Mark Casady, LPL Financial chairman and CEO.  Mr. Arnold will be based in San Diego.

"I am very pleased that Dan Arnold will be stepping up to the role of CFO," said Mr. Casady.  "Over the course of his 25-year career, Dan built and managed a business, led the integration of that business into LPL Financial, and has taken on leadership of a new department, Strategy, where he has already made a real impact on the way our firm approaches planning for the future."

Before he was named head of strategy in October 2011, Mr. Arnold served as president of Institution Services, the LPL Financial business unit that provides third-party investment and insurance services to more than 750 banks and credit unions nationwide.

Mr. Casady continued, "As the latest step in the realignment of several of LPL Financial's key executive leadership roles, our search for a new CFO led us to interview a number of talented leaders.  We looked for a blend of knowledge, energy, and management expertise in an individual who would fit within and contribute to our strong culture.  And what this search process clearly demonstrated is that we have in our midst an executive who is ready to take on a new challenge with expanded responsibility."

In his new role as CFO, Mr. Arnold will have oversight of LPL Financial's Finance organization, as well as its Internal Audit and Strategic Planning functions. 

"I am pleased with this latest evolution in our leadership team, and with our track record in filling key roles with the best talent available.  The success of our IPO and the following stage of our growth as a public company owes much to Robert's contributions in the CFO role.  As we open the next chapter for LPL Financial, I believe Dan is uniquely positioned to carry forward our strategic vision for the future of the firm, and I am greatly encouraged by the strength and balance of our senior leadership team," Mr. Casady concluded.

Forward-Looking Statements

This press release may contain forward-looking statements that involve risks and uncertainties.  Forward-looking statements are not guarantees of future performance and actual results may differ significantly from the results discussed in the forward-looking statements. Important factors that may cause such differences include, but are not limited to, risks and uncertainties associated with changes in general economic and financial market conditions, fluctuations in assets under management, effects of competition in the financial services industry, changes in the number of the Company's financial advisors and institutions and their ability to effectively market financial products and services, the effect of current, pending and future legislation, regulation and regulatory actions and other factors set forth under the heading "Risk Factors" in the Company's Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2011 and its Quarterly Report on Form 10-Q for the period ended March 31, 2012, which are available on and

You should not rely upon forward-looking statements as predictions of future events. The Company does not undertake and specifically disclaims any obligation to release publicly revisions that may be made to any forward-looking statements to reflect events or circumstances after the date of such statements or to reflect the occurrence of events, whether or not anticipated. In that respect, the Company cautions readers not to place undue reliance on any such forward-looking statements, which speak only as of the date made.

About LPL Financial

LPL Financial, a wholly owned subsidiary of LPL Investment Holdings Inc. (LPLA), is the nation's largest independent broker-dealer (based on total revenues, Financial Planning magazine, June 1996-2011), a top RIA custodian, and a leading independent consultant to retirement plans.  LPL Financial offers proprietary technology, comprehensive clearing and compliance services, practice management programs and training, and independent research to over 12,900 financial advisors and approximately 680 financial institutions. In addition, LPL Financial supports over 4,400 financial advisors licensed with insurance companies by providing customized clearing, advisory platforms and technology solutions. LPL Financial and its affiliates have approximately 2,700 employees with headquarters in Boston, Charlotte, and San Diego.  For more information, please visit

Securities offered through LPL Financial.  Member FINRA/SIPC

*Based on total revenues, Financial Planning magazine, June 1996-2011


LPL Financial Media Contacts
Michael Herley, Kekst and Company
(212) 521-4897                         


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