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Hubbard trustee candidates talk blight problem in the township

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HUBBARD, Ohio (WKBN) – The 2017 election is coming up and a seat for Hubbard Township Trustee is up for grabs this November. All three men running for trustee say fighting blight in the township is a top priority.

For three years, Richard Brant has been trying to get the vacant home next to his demolished.

“Had a lot of vandalism, rodents in and out, raccoons,” Brant said. “It’s just been an eye sore.”

A vacant home on Carter Street is just one of about 100 in Hubbard Township.

Trumbull Neighborhood Partnership says over 50 percent of the vacant homes in the highlighted section have been abandoned and are now in unlivable conditions.

“We’ve demolished eight already this year,” Thomas Jacobs said. “And, again to repeat, not one penny cost the tax payers or Hubbard Township residents.”

Jacobs, who is running for re-election, says the township is working with TNP and the Trumbull County Land Bank to deal with blight.

Tearing down a home can cost $7,500 dollars or more.

Rick Hernandez, who is running for trustee, says he wants to work with the county and state leaders to get more funding.

“It’s only a phone call away,” he said. “We have to be proactive. We have to get them on board. We have to look into the funding with grants from the state, federal or even the county.”

While trustee candidate Jeffrey Rowlands says, if the home is salvageable, he’d like people to move in.

“Right now we’re pushing almost $1.2 million in back taxes,” Rowland said. “That’s a lot of money.”

“It would go to the schools and other public services that we offer,” he added. “That’s a lot of money for roads and it would give us some funds to tear down the other funds.”

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