Wednesday, January 29, 2014

State should audit Cincinnati Moving forward Blight Abatement Program


The State of Ohio should immediately move to conduct an audit into the apparent waste and abuse of State provided monies for the"Moving forward" Ohio program.

The funds were to be used by the city of Cincinnati for the purpose of "Blight Abatement" which, in theory, improved the state of the community. However the property at 2549 Beekman illustrates, the city of Cincinnati Vacant building task force is far more interested in justifying their existence and 'looking busy' than actually addressing issues of real blight that effect our communities. Do demolition contractors have 'more pull' than communities?

The house at 2549 Beekman shines compared to others on the block with its multiple porches, side deck and obviously landscaped yard. In fact one might expect to see this home in Mt Adams and not Fairmount. This property just traded hands in December 2013 and was bought by a Huntsville Alabama company, Lakeside REO Ventures. In fact I am trying to contact them to find out if they know the house they just bought is about to be demoed?

This is not about "blight abatement', its about keeping demo contractors in business. Its about city inspectors not taking the time to perform due diligence . This property is a product of the foreclosure crisis and inspectors failure to do the 'hard work' of tracking down lenders. THAT is an issue this city council seriously needs to address. Inspectors are not following procedures, taking shortcuts in an effort to 'fast track' properties to demo. The demolition of this property serves no useful purpose, its demolition would, in fact, negatively impact nearby property values.

Where is our county landbank? Where are state auditors who need to investigate the 'abuse and misuse' of state monies being used to demo property that clearly is not 'blighted'.

If you are as concerned about this as I am, I urge you to email Mayor Cranley, mayor.cranley@cincinnati-oh.gov or his aid Bridgett Patton bridget.patton@cincinnati-oh.gov or maybe call your local radio show or contact you local newspaper and ask WHY?

4 comments:

Jake Leicht said...

Were you ever able to get a hold of Lakeside REO Ventures LLC? I need to get a hold of them as well and am having trouble finding how to contact them.

Betty Ventura said...

I just found out that they purchased a property in Spring Grove Village that had been scheduled for demolition. We tried and tried to get this place fixed up, but it is falling in on itself. It is attractive to kids and we aren't sure if there are squatters in there now.

The City told us that this would be taken down last July. There is stands now. If this house looked as good as the one you posted, I'd do everything in my power to keep it, but we had some experience with another one of these REO groups. They "responsibly" returned to to a local resident. It was the same guy who got the property condemned. We were dancing in the streets because the drug dealing, late night carousing, etc., etc. were ended. But, not so fast. He's been "working" on the house for a year. With and without permit. I've written to everyone in the building department with copies to their supervisors and the city manager. Every thing is in limbo.

Sorry to rant. When I walk down the street later, I'll get a phone number off the "For Sale" sign. But, don't hold your breath. I think they only give a web site address.

Betty Ventura said...

I just found out that they purchased a property in Spring Grove Village that had been scheduled for demolition. We tried and tried to get this place fixed up, but it is falling in on itself. It is attractive to kids and we aren't sure if there are squatters in there now.

The City told us that this would be taken down last July. There is stands now. If this house looked as good as the one you posted, I'd do everything in my power to keep it, but we had some experience with another one of these REO groups. They "responsibly" returned to to a local resident. It was the same guy who got the property condemned. We were dancing in the streets because the drug dealing, late night carousing, etc., etc. were ended. But, not so fast. He's been "working" on the house for a year. With and without permit. I've written to everyone in the building department with copies to their supervisors and the city manager. Every thing is in limbo.

Sorry to rant. When I walk down the street later, I'll get a phone number off the "For Sale" sign. But, don't hold your breath. I think they only give a web site address.

Andrea said...

That is such a shame. I would have purchased that house in a heartbeat. :( We found it on Zillow, and were so excited to go see it, and then found out it had been torn down.