Wednesday, Aug 24, 2016
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Politics

One Village Council weighs in on blight

Members of the One Village Council had a series of suggestions and requests Monday night for city officials who want to tackle blight.

Dawn Comstock, One Village Council president, said the group asked the city to target North Toledo and East Toledo for two to three years to support revitalization resources and neighborhood organizations.

The community group also asked the city to hold a hearing on regulations for non-owner-occupied housing, to hold a hearing on an ordinance that would require banks to post a bond before beginning foreclosure proceedings, and to hold banks accountable for the properties they own. Ms. Comstock said the council received “overwhelming support” for most of the requests.

More than 80 residents and 12 city representatives attended the meeting at the Chester Zablocki Senior Center. Mayor D. Michael Collins, Lucas County treasurer Wade Kapszukiewicz, Councilman Paula Hicks-Hudson, Councilman Lindsay Webb, Councilman Larry Sykes, and many other city officials listened carefully to the various issues voiced at the meeting.

Ms. Comstock said before the meeting she spoke on the phone with State Sen. Edna Brown (D., Toledo) who was unable to attend. According to Ms. Comstock, Senator Brown said that she was in support of targeting North Toledo because, “when you concentrate in one area, you get more done.”

Councilman Sandy Spang said, “The greatest value was not what we could say here but what we heard. There was a sense that all of us were here because we genuinely want to address the concerns.

“I was deeply affected when they asked who had heard a gunshot near their home and almost every hand went up,” she said

Mrs. Spang praised the council’s efforts to fight blight in their neighborhood.

“They’re doing more than any elected official can do by living in the neighborhoods and pushing back against crime and blight.”

Contact Kathleen Ashcraft at: kashcraft@theblade.com or 419-724-6050.

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