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Youngstown council agrees to hold banks accountable, install traffic cameras

Published: Wed, January 2, 2013 @ 9:46 p.m.


City council has authorized Youngstown Board of Control to contract with Mahoning County for building inspections and with a private company to install traffic cameras.

County commissioners already signed off on the agreement last month to consolidate the city’s building department into the county’s.

Mayor Charles Sammarone sponsored the legislation and said Wednesday he supports the measure as a cost-saving initiative.

The board of control also got the green light from council to negotiate a contract with Redflex Traffic Systems of Phoenix to install traffic cameras in school zones throughout the city.

Council also voted to amend the vacant property registry to include a $10,000 bond on foreclosed properties, a victory for residents who have been advocating accountability from banks that own dilapidated homes in foreclosure.

The legislation is a result of a Mahoning Valley Organizing Collaborative campaign, and the bond can be used against mowing, boarding and demolition costs the city incurs, said Gary Davenport, MVOC organizing fellow.

He said the legislation is based on laws in Canton and Springfield, Mass., and “takes a big industry to task.”

Law Director Anthony Farris violators will be prosecuted, and the city’s broad definition of a property owner can be used to hold banks accountable.

For the complete story, read Thursday's Vindicator or Vindy.com.


1whitesabbath(738 comments)posted 1 year, 8 months ago

Awesome !!!

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2zz3(931 comments)posted 1 year, 8 months ago

sounds good on paper but lets see when it comes down to someone actually doing the footwork necessary to prosecute!! I hope it works and make them keep up these properties

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3bmanresident(597 comments)posted 1 year, 8 months ago

The year was 1984. Traffic cameras are just a move to a bigger police state than the one that we already live in. Youngstown stands to steal thousands from honest people working in the suburbs with this new camera system. How many people on the southside are really going to pay these fines?

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4Roland_Martin(24 comments)posted 1 year, 8 months ago


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5Ianacek(909 comments)posted 1 year, 8 months ago

The $10,000 foreclosure bond is another "own goal" by Youngstown City. Does anyone think this will make banks more disposed to advance mortgage loans to families buying Youngstown homes ?
The Councilpeople , staff & the community organizers who pull their strings have no idea how the property market works & what it really takes to control blight.
They introduce these "kneejerk" policies without consulting affected parties . Home inspections & Vacant Property registration has had no effect , so they bonds because 2 other very dissimilar cities have introduced them.
I'm not sure if the Mayor & Council actually have a vision for the City , but in case they do , they would be better consulting on how to make it happen with those who have skin in the game renovating & selling Youngstown properties .

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