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Cincinnati Council Could Again Tweak Foreclosed Property Registry

Cincinnati's vacant foreclosed property registry is still showing good results. Now City Council could vote Wednesday to close a loophole in the program.

Council Member P.G. Sittenfeld helped create the registry three years ago.

"It originally specified for-profit lenders, so that, unintentionally, was basically an oversight that exempted credit unions," Sittenfeld said.  "So it's going to fix that."

The registry started as a pilot program in five neighborhoods and has now been expanded citywide.

Lenders who own residential property must register those homes with the city and agree to maintain them.

The lenders pay fees and the program is self-sustaining and has extra revenue.  Sittenfeld said the money should remain in the program.

City administrators will also be studying motions to work with Hamilton County officials on creating a housing court.

"Obviously the city can't setup its own court," Sittenfeld said.  "But we'd like for the city administration to go forward feeling like they have the leverage and the policy support and voice of Council to have a specialized docket that can actually deal with the gambit of problem property issues... with more expedience and more expertise."

City administrators are also being asked to setup a new website to make it easier for residents to report issues with foreclosed properties.

Jay Hanselman brings more than 10 years experience as a news anchor and reporter to 91.7 WVXU. He came to WVXU from WNKU, where he hosted the local broadcast of All Things Considered. Hanselman has been recognized for his reporting by the Kentucky AP Broadcasters Association, the Ohio Society of Professional Journalists, and the Ohio AP Broadcasters.