INCREASED FORECLOSURES COMING FOR CODE VIOLATORS-Andrew Stelzer

03/17/05

As we’ve been reporting this week here on WMNF, the increased enforcement of code violations in many Tampa neighborhoods has some residents upset about being targeted for heavy fines. Today The Tampa city council approved 50 thousand dollars for judicial enforcement of code violations, to increase the number of foreclosures on properties throughout the city. WMNFs Andrew Stelzer has more.

COUNCIL ON FORCLOSURE

. Stevie Manski, a land use development attorney, warned the council that a similar program had failed in the past. ACT- "They’re planning to foreclose on 15-20 a month..in Tampa lots are worth a lot, talk about millions of dollars being foreclosed on..We had this project before, we had the rings code enforcement and then when you got to distribution, the city was the largest owner of lots, you couldn’t disgorge ..Has there been workshops, is it well thought out, ha it been vested?

Councilman Kevin White said he was concerned about which people would be targeted for code violations. ACT white "If this is going to be implemented, the great majority of these people are going to be the poor and disenfranchised, we do have some absentee landowners and slumlords but the great majority is people who cant afford to fix up their property and we need t make sure they have the chance to fix it up, not be a bulldog and foreclose and kick you out I have not seen that..."

But Council members Ferlita and Mary Alvarez said they support the increased emphasis on fining code violators--which was one of mayor Iorios first priorities upon taking office. ACT-Ferlita "Pain was a wonderful motivator, the commercial sites that are repeated violators, if we are gonna protect the neighborhoods I support the mayor she is going o bring it to fruition, we cant do that to homeowners y9ouve been doing this on Florida ave.." ACT-alvarez "Low income high income, cleanliness is a virtue a lot of people think its ok to dump your trash in someone else’s lot an who gets to pay it?.."

The city will be holding a workshop on April 7th regarding the new foreclosure policy.

For WMNF news, I’m Andrew Stelzer

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