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Tulsa making a push to handle blighted properties

Posted at 12:33 PM, Apr 29, 2019
and last updated 2019-04-30 02:37:51-04

TULSA — The City of Tulsa is prioritizing blighted properties in 2020.

Dwain Midget, the director of Working In Neighborhoods, said there are about 300 homes in the process of being declared blighted by the city. He said there are about 68 that are already on their demolition list.

As part of the Housing Opportunity Partnership in the 2020 budget, the city plans to work as quickly as the law allows them to address the properties. Midget said that means either tearing them down or forcing the owner to fix the problem.

Midget said there are structures all over the city that are blighted. They plan to focus specifically on areas where groups like Habitat for Humanity and Crossover Community Development are working.

The goal is for the organizations to build on the lots so someone can have the chance to own a home.

"It becomes a win-win for everyone," Midget said. "For the neighborhood, because they have gotten rid of a deplorable structure in their neighborhood and for then for a homeowner because you've offered them the opportunity to be a part of the American dream."

He said these properties are a haven for crime and can reduce property values of existing homes by up to $7,500.

They plan for this program to take about two years to address all of the properties.

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