CLEVELAND (AP) - Cleveland plans to demolish 500 abandoned homes near grade schools this year to make those areas safer and clear properties that might attract crime.
Cleveland.com (http://bit.ly/2qzY9TH ) reports the first three homes were taken down last week across from a school.
The program's launch comes about four months after a Cleveland teenager disappeared on her way to school and was found dead days later in a vacant home. A registered sex offender charged in the slaying of 14-year-old Alianna DeFreeze has pleaded not guilty in the potential death penalty case.
Mayor Frank Jackson says the city is aiming to tear down every abandoned home that is within 500 feet of a school serving students in kindergarten through eighth grade.
Jackson says a voter-approved income tax increase helps fund the effort.
Information from: cleveland.com, http://www.cleveland.com