Vermont Guard Foundation discovers money they didn’t know they had

COLCHESTER, Vt. — The foundation that raises money to help Vermont military families facing an unexpected expense or repair has discovered a surprise in the state’s unclaimed property fund.

In November, State Treasurer Beth Pearce told NBC5 her office is sitting on more than $80 million in cash and physical assets she’d like very much to reunite with rightful owners.

Since then, Pearce reports a surge in claim requests and has successfully returned money on a robust pace — roughly 2,000 more claims from individuals than at the same point last year, which was a record year.

But her staff has also been reaching out to a variety of names on Vermont’s unclaimed property list, sending letters to as many of the 420,000 entries and last known addresses as they can.

And they found a match — in the Vermont National Guard Charitable Foundation Fund.

The NGCF fund treasurer says she was shocked to discover what appears to be a deposit made in connection with a 2013 air show, which had to be cancelled suddenly. The deposit was eventually forwarded to Pearce’s office in Montpelier.

“Companies don’t get to keep those,” Pearce said. “We think this is from three or four years ago, but we only got it this year.”

Pearce personally presented a check for $1,301 to foundation leaders at Camp Johnson Tuesday. She again urged Vermonters to log in to her site — or the national “missing money” database — and type in some names.

You might be in for a surprise. Unclaimed monies range from a low of $1 to more than $500,000.

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