[prj] $1 homes proposed for poor (fwd)

Leslie Schentag (wy497@victoria.tc.ca)
Fri, 19 Feb 1999 19:36:09 -0800 (PST)

  Leslie Schentag
  Gremlin Research Consultants
  Web Site: http://firms.findlaw.com/gremlinz

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---------- Forwarded message ----------
Date: Fri, 19 Feb 1999 16:06:54 -0500
From: "Mark A. Smith" <msmith01@flash.net>
To: Mark <msmith01@flash.net>
Subject: [prj] $1 homes proposed for poor

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This should make Leslie happy.

                            Friday, February 19, 1999

                            $1 homes proposed for poor

                            State plan would let people buy abandoned
                            houses. In Detroit, 39,000 stand empty

                            By B.G. Gregg / News Lansing Bureau

                                LANSING -- Lower-income residents in
                            Detroit and other Michigan cities could
                            buy their own homes for $1 under an
                            ambitious program designed to reverse the
                            decades-old problem of abandoned housing
                            and urban decay.
                                The plan unveiled Thursday by state
                            legislators also would allow those living
                            in housing developments to take over their
                            buildings and buy their apartments for $1.
                            As with the abandoned buildings, the
                            residents would first have to pay
                            market-rate rent for five years.
                                The Michigan Urban Homestead
                            Initiative, which would make Michigan the
                            first state in the nation to implement a
                            homesteading program on a statewide basis,
                            has bipartisan support. Sponsors say it
                            could win approval by spring.
                                Lawmakers said it would be good news
                            for older cities. Detroit would have a
                            chance to fix up some of the estimated
                            39,000 abandoned homes -- enough to house
                            the population of Jackson County -- and
                            clean up crime-ridden housing
                                "I think it's something most people
                            would like -- if the homes are up to
                            code," said Donna Carter, a Detroit nurse
                            who is trying to buy a rehabilitated home
                            in the city. "But a lot of the abandoned
                            homes are in neighborhoods I wouldn't want
                            to be in."
                                A key component of the plan would cut
                            the amount of time necessary for local
                            governments to take ownership of
                            delinquent properties, from six years to
                            as little as a year. That would allow the
                            properties to be rented out sooner.
                                "We're dusting off the Homestead Act
                            of 1862, giving it a modern face-lift --
                            but it is the same ethic that settled the
                            West," said state Sen. Bill Schuette,
                            R-Midland, chief architect of the

                            Copyright 1999, The Detroit News
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