Fighting Blight in the Northeast-Midwest: A Capitol Hill Briefing on Vacant and Abandoned Property and the Federal Response

When: May 24, 2016; 3-4:30pm

Where: 2103 Rayburn House Office Building

Vacant and abandoned property is a problem that in recent decades has plagued many Northeast and Midwest cities still recovering from post-industrial population and job loss. In many cases, the foreclosure crisis has exacerbated the problem. The cost of fighting blight—whether through rehabilitation, demolition, or land reuse—is high. In many places, the need greatly exceeds available funding. At the same time, most targeted and stable federal support for addressing blight is decreasing, time-limited, or stagnant in the face of rising supply and labor costs.

Briefing attendees will learn about: the widespread and persistent effects of abandoned property, including the most recent wave of abandonment resulting from the foreclosure crisis; NEMWI’s work to identify and assess federal resources and legislation that can help communities address blight; and innovative approaches that communities are taking, with the assistance of federal programs, to rehabilitate or demolish property, or reuse land productively post-demolition.

Speakers include:
Dr. Colleen Cain, Senior Policy Analyst, NEMWI
Mr. Frank Ford, Senior Policy Advisor, Thriving Communities Institute, Western Reserve Land Conservancy
Mr. Michael Braverman, Deputy Commissioner, Permits & Code Enforcement, City of Baltimore
Mr. Stephen Janes, Assistant Commissioner, Research & Compliance, City of Baltimore

The Northeast-Midwest Institute is hosting this briefing in conjunction with the Northeast-Midwest Congressional Coalition.

For more information or to RSVP, contact Colleen Cain, or 202.464.4005.