Foreclosures lead to decline in cities’ revenues, NLC survey says
The increasing number of foreclosures across the country has led to a decline in revenue for one-third of cities responding to a recent poll by the Washington-based National League of Cities (NLC). More than half of the respondents also have seen a rise in requests for temporary assistance for counseling, food bank and other non-housing related services.
NLC released the results of the online/e-mail poll of more than 200 cities on Tuesday. “Cities are already seeing reductions in their revenues at the same time that more services are needed to address the many related problems caused by the foreclosures,” says NLC President and Madison, Ala., Councilwoman Cyntia McCollum. “Unfortunately, we also know that the problems will continue for many years before they get better.”
One-third of the respondents also report a rise in abandoned or vacant properties. “In one new community in Charlotte, N.C., 115 out of 123 homes were boarded up,” McCollum said. “Where there are widespread foreclosures, cities must ensure the safety of the residents still living in the community, must keep the grass mowed, and stop vandalism.”
Also, more than half of the respondents say lending institutions have not offered support to the local governments in handling the situation. NLC’s Insta Poll Fact Sheet is available at www.nlc.org.