Is there a solution to the foreclosure mess that's destroying communities?
Across the country, cities are in crisis because of the fallout from the mortgage mess —property taxes are way down, and abandoned homes are bringing down property values, inviting crime, and draining government coffers. Neighborhoods are being destroyed. Yet the federal bailout money is not going directly to desperate communities and homeowners, but to local and national banks.
This week, NOW investigates the innovative way some cities are fighting back. The city of Memphis, Tennessee is suing major national lenders and banks for deceptive and discriminatory lending practices in an effort to recoup the cost of the foreclosure mess. Other cities suing lenders for their role in the mortgage mess include Baltimore, Cleveland, Buffalo, and Birmingham.
With desperation climbing alongside debt, can the strategy help these blighted parts of America?