LINEBORO — The bank that issued a home equity loan to the town's former post office manager has foreclosed on her home and will put the $108,000 property up for public auction Friday.
In court documents filed in September, Taneytown Bank and Trust Co. said Barbara J. Hossler and herhusband, Russell, defaulted on a $29,000 home equity credit line secured by their house in the 4200 block of Main Street.
Court records show the Hosslers -- who purchased the two-story brick home in 1987 for $85,000 -- owe the bank $30,190 in principal, interest, late charges and life insurance premiums.
Hossler had operated the community post office out of her home since 1987 at a salaryof $9,057 a year until Aug. 7, when U.S. Postal Service Inspectors shut down the facility after an audit revealed a $615 shortfall in postal receipts.
The audit showed that money from the sale of stamps and money orders was used to make a $358 payment on a pickup truck registered in her husband's name.
Hossler was charged in connection with the theft on Aug. 19. A preliminary inquiry is scheduled for Nov. 12 in Carroll County District Court. She is set to face trial Dec. 17 and could receive up to 15 years in jail and a $1,000 fine.
Thecommunity post office has remained closed since August, but a searchis on for a new contractor to bring post office boxes, stamp sales and other postal services back to the nearly 120 customers here. Postal officials said they hope to have a contractor ready for business byearly December, which would mean that customers here would no longerhave to travel to the Manchester Post Office for their postal services.
"We're still trying to get the facility opened by the first ofDecember," said Jack D. Francis, Manchester postmaster and the person responsible for overseeing the Lineboro office. "We're still in theprocess of sending out contract proposals and lining everything up."
Francis said three people in this town of about 200 residents have expressed interest in running a community post office. More than 1,000 pieces of mail a week were handled at the facility, postal officials said. Residents here have said the closing of the community post office was a surprise and has become an inconvenience.
Attempts toreach Hossler by telephone yesterday were unsuccessful. Edwin L. Koons at Taneytown Bank and Trust could not be reached for comment, and the bank's lawyer, Charles E. Stoner, was out of town and could not be reached.
The sale will be conducted by Westminster auctioneer T.R. O'Farrell Inc. 10 a.m. Friday at the Hosslers' home. Anyone interested in buying the property is required to make a $10,000 deposit onthe day of the sale. The balance of the sale price must be paid to the bank's lawyer within 10 days of settlement. The property will be sold as is.
In addition to the two-story brick house, the sale willinclude about 3,400 square feet of land, a private well and septic system and a 900-square-foot shed in the backyard.
Before the Hosslers bought the house, it was owned by Charlotte Anne Shock, who had run the community post office from the home for at least four years.