Blame For Blighted Properties In Monessen Reaches Across Globe

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Westmoreland ...

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Westmoreland County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Mayor Lou Mavrakis drove slowly through Monessen, block by block, pointing out one vacant, blighted building after another in the city of 7,700 along the Monongahela River.

“That belongs to me,” he said, pointing to a house with a collapsing roof that has become the responsibility of the city and the mayor.

Tax records show the building is one of 264 structures and lots in the city that have been abandoned by their owners. More than 26 percent of the city’s 734 blighted properties are owned by people from 24 states and five foreign countries, beyond the legal reach of Monessen officials.

“It’s almost impossible to get in touch with these owners,” Mavrakis said.

Read more: http://triblive.com/news/westmoreland/6562693-74/property-owners-monessen#ixzz3ACc2e4tx
Follow us: @triblive on Twitter | triblive on Facebook

Advertisements

Financing For Pennsylvania Turnpike/I-95 Connector Concerns Auditor General

Map of Bucks County, Pennsylvania, United Stat...

Map of Bucks County, Pennsylvania, United States with township and municipal boundaries (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Pennsylvania Auditor General Eugene DePasquale said Friday that an unusual plan to finance construction of the I-95/Pennsylvania Turnpike connection “raises alarms” and may prompt an investigation by his office.

DePasquale said he was especially interested in why an entity was created to broker the deal, in which wealthy foreign investors would lend the turnpike $200 million in exchange for possible permanent residence in the United States.

DePasquale said his office was legally bound to wait until a transaction is completed before launching an audit, so “it may be several months or longer” before he formally investigates the turnpike plan.

“I am going to follow this situation carefully,” DePasquale said.  “It raises some alarms.  I’m not taking a position that it’s wrong yet. . . . We’ll wait till the issue is ripe for an audit.”

Read more at http://www.philly.com/philly/business/transportation/20130511_Financing_for_turnpike_I-95_connector_concerns_auditor_general.html#KbbfJ65OCH8owKzj.99