Tuesday, May 22, 2018
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Residents grill mayor on cleanup initiative

Issues at meeting ranged from parks to traffic laws


Mayor D. Michael Collins speaks during the Beverly Avenue Block Watch meeting.

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Toledo Mayor D. Michael Collins was quizzed on Monday night about issues ranging from the city’s plans for cleaning up blighted neighborhoods to cutting grass in parks and enforcing traffic laws during a meeting of a south-end block watch group.

Mayor Collins said his plan of tackling vacant and nuisance properties by teaming police officers with city inspectors to work with neighborhood watch groups will begin today when the number of community service officers expands from three to nine.

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He told about 75 people who attended the monthly meeting of the Beverly Block Watch in Zion United Methodist Church, 2600 Copeland Blvd., that nine six-block areas will be targeted in the initiative, and actions will include inspecting every property for nuisance violations and setting goals to clean up blight.

He said he plans to work with Toledo Municipal Judge C. Allen McConnell on a plan to round up and arrest property owners who have warrants for nuisance and housing code violations.

When asked by a resident about efforts to patrol the Anthony Wayne Trail for speeding motorcyclists, Mayor Collins said he plans to work with Maumee Mayor Rich Carr in a joint operation for speed enforcement by using a helicopter and strategically placed police cars on the trail.

The mayor has pledged to take on blight throughout the city by pursuing landlords who own neglected rental properties and beefing up enforcement of building codes.

He has called on neighborhood groups such as block watch organizations to join the anti-blight effort by reporting illegal trash dumping and other violations in their neighborhoods.

—Mark Reiter

Contact Mark Reiter at: markreiter@theblade.com or 419-724-6199.

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