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WestCAP welcomes new vehicle purchase program

By Kelsie Hoitomt

GLENWOOD CITY – Ideal Auto, WestCAP’s used car dealership has recently switched gears and has signed on with Credit Acceptance as a new loan assistant provider for customers whose credit is not good enough for them to qualify for WestCAP’s JumpStart program.

Prior to using Credit Acceptance, WestCAP had been using the Wisconsin Employment Transportation Assistance Program (WETAP) as a means for federal and state funds through their grant program.

In 2011, WETAP provided the JumpStart Program with $60,692 in federal funds, $15,831 in state funds and $25,508 in local funds; to provide transportation assistance for low-income workers in Barron, Chippewa, Dunn, Polk, Pepin, Pierce and St. Croix Counties.

However, federal and state funds ended in 2012 due to budget cuts and changing priorities and WETAP was no longer able to provide funds so WestCAP had to find another means for funds.

One solution was found through a generous grant of $106,000 given by Otto Bremer to help establish the JumpStart program as a self funded social enterprise and to pilot a residential energy retrofit program.

The other means of funding for individuals in need of a vehicle is now Credit Acceptance, which along with WESTconsin Credit Union has been helping clients receive car loans.

Car donations are now an important part of what continues to keep JumpStart alive. Individuals and families are encouraged to donate their vehicles to WestCAP so a low-income family can be helped.

Other than the personal satisfaction of helping someone, there is also a tax advantage to be gained by donating a car as a person can receive the highest possible charitable tax deduction if WestCAP is able to use their donated car directly in the program.