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Published: Wednesday, 3/12/2008

Toledo City Council takes federal aid to buy homes hit by floods

Toledo City Council yesterday agreed to accept federal money and buy six houses most seriously damaged by the series of storms that flooded Crawford and other streets in West and South Toledo nearly two years ago.

Council voted 11-0 to accept the money. Frank Szollosi was not present.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency has awarded the city a $390,000 grant to purchase the six houses 415 West Crawford Ave., 334, 402, 411, and 442 West Crawford, and 6222 Bapst Ave.

Councilman Lindsay Webb, whose district includes the area flooded between June 21 and July 12, 2006, said the homes were damaged beyond repair and are in unlivable condition because of mold.

"We are basically looking for an opportunity to provide the homeowners fair market value and give them an opportunity to leave," she said.

The homes will be torn down and green space will remain where they once stood, which will help absorb some of the rainwater, Ms. Webb said.

Near the conclusion of last night's regular meeting, Ms. Webb, chairman of council's youth, parks, and recreation committee, said she had asked the Finkbeiner administration and the other councilmen to consider legislation that would open at least one "aquatic recreation facility" - a pool or splash pad - in each part of the city.

She suggested the additional funding come from the interest earned by the Toledo CityParks Fund, which has interest earnings of $138,000 available for appropriation in 2008.

Her proposed legislation suggests the city pools at Detwiler, Pickford, Ravine, Roosevelt, and Willys be open. Spray parks at Jamie Farr and Savage also would be open.

The total cost to open those seven facilities is $401,995.

The proposed 2008 general operating fund budget allocates $270,816 to open Pickford and Ravine pools and Jamie Farr and Savage spray parks.

Councilman Michael Ashford said it was important to make sure Wilson Park Pool in North Toledo is open.

Council President Mark Sobczak said the administration was studying ways to keep that pool open for the 2008 season.

In other business, council dedicated and named True Street, from Dorr Street to Indiana Avenue, after the Rev. Robert Wormeley of Southern Missionary Baptist Church. The street will be known as Rev. Robert Wormeley Way.



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