Major Ohio county stopping tax foreclosures

AP News
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Posted: Dec 22, 2009 11:19 AM

County officials in Cleveland are declaring a six-month halt in foreclosures for unpaid property taxes.

Cuyahoga (ky-uh-HOH'-guh) County Treasurer Jim Rokakis (roh-KAH'-kis) plans to announce the moratorium on Tuesday. Officials say it will cut a break to about 1,700 homes now in the foreclosure process and another 1,700 expected to fall behind on payments in the next half-year.

Cleveland has one of the nation's worst foreclosure problems, and Rokakis tells The Plain Dealer newspaper that things are only getting worse. Officials hope the moratorium will help some owners avoid foreclosure and prevent more properties from going vacant.

Taxes will still be owed after the six months, and penalties and interest will continue to add up during the time-out.