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City wants abandoned buildings declared unsafe, torn down

Posted at 10:58 AM, Jan 04, 2020
and last updated 2020-01-04 10:59:50-05

Leaders in one Indiana city are tired of the blight and want abandoned buildings declared unsafe so they can be torn down.

The new mayor of Gary, Indiana has only been in office for a few days, and he wants to take action.

The issue is nine shuttered school buildings that are the targets of vandalism as well as hangouts for gangs.

It's easy to see why the mayor and others think they need to be bulldozed down.

One school is the former Edison Junior High where windows are shattered, chalkboards and walls inside are painted with graffiti, old furniture and trash now litter the parking lot.

And the outside is decorated with a deteriorating playground where a homicide victim was found a couple of months ago.

Mayor Jerome Prince says, "Over the last four or five years, there's been a number of instances where the schools have been the subject of a crime. This is obviously an issue of public safety and so it is one of our priorities."

The mayor faults the school district for not selling the buildings or finding other uses for them rather than letting them get fall into such disrepair.

If a judge clears the way, the school system will have to pay for them to be torn down.