Transportation Support

Whether its help navigating a major repair, assessing a vehicle’s value, finding and purchasing a quality car or estimating annual operating costs, we are there for you.  

  • cars

Overview-Transportation

Capstone Community Action has been on the forefront of transportation assistance to low income Vermonters for nearly 20 years. Community Action Motors operated as a donated vehicle repair facility and offered low cost repairs to the general public until 2008.

When the garage closed due to lack of donations Capstone's Transportation Project formerly known as Vermont Car Coach Project was created to fill in some of the gaps faced by Reach Up families. Voc-Rehab began utilizing Car Coach services in 2009. A low-cost loan program operated from 2008 until 2013. Nearly 40 households received loans from VSECU to purchase high quality used vehicles and Capstone's Transportation Project has participated in the purchase of over 500 cars since its creation. Over 1,750 households have received information on car purchases or repairs.   

Services-Transportation

Transportation Workshops are held around the state for Reach Up and Voc-Rehab participants. They are short, concentrated sessions covering all manner of car issues. Consumers learn how to examine their finances, explore their budgets for missed savings opportunities and save for vehicle ownership. Credit issues are discussed and credit reports run or requested. For many participants this is their first exposure to these important subjects. Referral from a Reach Up case manager or Voc-Rehab counselor is required.

Kip Vorce’s years of experience are an excellent resource to consumers with car problems of all kinds. Please feel free to contact him for advice on your own car situation. Although we do not have funds available to assist, often we can guide you to a better resolution.

Eligibility

Currently financial assistance is available on a limited basis only to consumers supported by a Reach Up case manager or Voc-Rehab counselor. However, feel free to call for advice if you have a difficult car situation and we will try to help you.  

FAQ

Q. Can anyone use our services?

A. We can talk to anyone about cars but financial assistance is only available through Reach Up or Voc-Rehab. Please feel free to call to talk about your car problem with our knowledgeable staff.

Q. Can you fix my car?

A. We may be able to help you find a responsible repair facility but will not be able to assist financially unless you are supported by a Reach Up case manager or Voc-Rehab counselor.

Q. Can I donate my car to you?

A. We no longer have a facility to repair and distribute donated cars. However, in rare instances we do accept vehicles to further our agency mission or award to needy households. Please call Eileen Nooney at 1-802-477-5130 for more information.

Q. Can you help me with a DMV problem such as title or lien release?

A. We are very familiar with DMV regulations and may be able to answer general questions about registrations, titles, lien releases or licensing. However, VT DMV is the final and most knowledgeable source for information on these issues.

 

Additional Resources-Transportation

The internet is a nearly unlimited source of information on car issues. Buying, selling, financing or repairing, you can always find a resource to guide you through a car situation.

Trying to find the value of a car? These three websites are the most commonly used. They can help you find out if a car you are buying is a good deal or help you establish an asking price for a car you are trying to sell. They have consumer reviews on most cars and articles on maintenance and repair.

Kelly Blue Book www.kbb.com

National Auto Dealers’ Association (NADA) www.nada.com

Edmunds www.edmunds.com

Looking for a “new” car? Many dealers and private sellers participate in online used car sites.

Try this for finding a car in your price range in your area. www.autotrader.com

How can I find out about registration and title requirements? The Vermont Department of Motor Vehicles is knowledgeable and responsive. You can call them at 1-802-828-2000 or check their website

http://dmv.vermont.gov/

I’m ready for a new car, anything I should know before I go shopping? The Center for Responsible Lending has a website with lots of tips about shopping for loans and cars.

http://www.responsiblelending.org/other-consumer-loans/auto-financing/tools-resources/car-loan-tips.html

How much gas will I use in a year? Determining your actual ownership costs can be a challenge but this website will help you find the EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) fuel mileage rating on most cars. The site is easy to use and lets you compare cars side by side so you can see how much more the truck will cost to run than the little 4 door sedan. Remember—the “Annual Fuel Cost” amount is based on only 15,000 miles per year, Vermonters tend to drive more. www.fueleconomy.gov

Do you feel like your mechanic speaks a different language? Automotive terms can leave your head swimming. Take a deep breath and do a little research. All these websites contain information on car systems, usually complete with detailed explanations and illustrations. It’s nice to be able to speak to a technician when you have a little knowledge.

These guys were on the radio for years, their website is still up www.cartalk.com

This website can walk you through maintenance schedules and repairs www.carcare.org

My personal favorite, this has animated views of automotive systems www.howstuffworks.com

Does my car have a timing belt? If you don’t know the answer to this question you risk serious engine damage or failure. You can look in your owner’s manual, call the dealer with your vehicle’s year/make/model or look here to find out. This takes awhile to load but is a complete list.

http://cdn603.ilcdn.net/files/20110223193902/gatesdocs/TimingBeltReplacementGuide.pdf

Whether you realize it or not, every time you make a car decision you also make a money decision. Credit issues can drive up your financing rate making ownership unaffordable and impractical. Spend a little time getting your finances in order before you apply for a loan. Remember, just because the dealer can get you a loan doesn’t mean you can afford it. Request and review your credit reports before going to look for cars. Once you drive away you may not be able to change your mind.

This site will give you free access to all 3 of your credit reports but not your score.

 www.annualcreditreport.com

This site will give you a free TransUnion credit report with score.

 www.creditkarma.com

Trying to help someone navigate their finances? Teenagers and young adults are likely to need some common-sense advice on budgeting and credit. Here are some websites than can help them along the way.

This website is full of information on finance issues for all ages.

www.ftc.gov

This site can help you manage your finances. 

 www.mint.com

 

 

 

Contact Us at Transportation

We are located at Capstone Community Action at 20 Gable Place, Barre VT 05641. However, our small staff covers all of Vermont so may not be readily available at the office. Please call before coming into the office to make sure we are there.

You can reach our Transportation Program Manager, Kip Vorce, at 1-802-479-5274 or by email at kvorce@capstonevt.org

Our working hours are M-F 8:00 AM to 4:30 PM. Please note we follow the State of Vermont’s schedule for holidays and weather closings. We do not check or return voice or emails after hours, on weekends, or holidays.

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