Council candidates' stance on the city's economic situation
March 30, 2010
Can and should the city do more?
Briarmoon: The city needs to keep our families in their homes. We are expecting an additional avalanche of foreclosures with GM benefits running out shortly … In most sheriff sales, no one bids and the lender ends up with the property. Within 30 days, there is a forced eviction and a vacated property subject to neglect and probable vandalism … The city could invest in the homes, purchase them at sheriff's sales and sell them on land contract back to former property owners at 30 to 50 cents on the dollar at a 5 percent fixed rate on a 30-year amortization, with the first payment due in six months. The monthly payment would exceed the city loan costs but drop the payment by the occupant.
Hoppenjan: Go green to create jobs.
McDonald: Yes, the city can do more, and the city should do more. The city should increase its efforts working with private and not-for-profit entities to ensure all citizens of our community are taken care of. There are many great agencies currently taking care of various groups of people who are in difficult situations. As a city, I would like to see us continue to support and even increase support for these groups.
Rashkin: The city must have open communication channels with community organizations as well as with the county and other governmental bodies charged with helping those in our community who have the least. In these difficult times, I am committed to continue making sure the city government is open-minded and responsive to the needs of the residents.
Voskuil: We need to determine the role of the city within the anti-poverty initiative and work together with the many agencies that provide services for the underserved citizens of Janesville. We have budgeted $15,000 to aid in an anti-poverty initiative, and we need to assess and determine how we can best utilize this money to help the citizens in Janesville who are struggling. We are a strong community that needs to work together to tackle poverty in our city. I will continue to advocate for a stronger role of local government in anti-poverty initiatives.