City Council takes up vacant building issue

July 20, 2011 3:33:28 PM PDT
Trying to clean up Chicago's epidemic of abandoned buildings, the City Council is holding hearings on a measure that would force banks and other owners to take care of their properties.

So far, this year, Chicago has spent more than $5 million tearing down abandoned buildings. They damage property values and can be breeding grounds for crime.

The measure would require owners to register those buildings and to maintain them. It would also allow the city to perform maintenance on the structures and force the owners to pay for it.