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Action against candidate withdrawn

Assembly candidate Paula Banks Dahlke will not lose her home, as the bank that holds the mortgage assured her Monday it is dropping its foreclosure effort.

The 138th District Republican said Monday night that HSBC Mortgage Corp. followed up a Monday phone call with a fax confirming its decision.

A foreclosure auction was to have been held Nov. 13 in the Niagara County Courthouse in Lockport, offering the home of the candidate and her husband, Charles, to the highest bidder.

Court records show the Dahlkes owe $106,204 in principal, interest and penalties on a house with an assessed valuation of $94,500.

"They have agreed our income will match our outgo," Banks Dahlke said. "We needed to prove we had the financial stability to make our payment and our other bills. . . . We've been working hard on this for 16 months."

The Dahlkes forestalled foreclosure last year by filing for Chapter 13 bankruptcy protection, but after they came out of bankruptcy this summer, HSBC moved to enforce a foreclosure order signed May 21, 2007, by State Supreme Court Justice Richard C. Kloch Sr.

"I wanted to make sure we were out of Chapter 13 before I took office [in the Assembly]," Banks Dahlke said.

She is challenging veteran Democratic incumbent Assemblywoman Francine DelMonte, D-Lewiston, in next Tuesday's election. The 138th District covers most of Niagara County, except for the cities of Lockport and North Tonawanda and the towns of Lockport, Pendleton, Royalton and Somerset.

The Dahlkes filed for bankruptcy after a series of financial reverses in 2006 sent their lives into a tailspin.

Banks Dahlke was hospitalized for 11 days in May 2006, and after her release, her doctors refused to allow her to return to work. She eventually was let go by her employer, Marrano Homes.

At the same time, her husband, an architect, was laid off by Barden Homes. The Dahlkes had their own architectural and design business, but both had taken second jobs to try to pay off debts left over from Banks Dahlke's unsuccessful 2004 Assembly campaign.

"Things kind of spun out of control, as they have for many people," Banks Dahlke said.

e-mail: tprohaska@buffnews.com

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