The Foreclosure Crisis
CLEVELAND: Jim Rokakis, Cuyahoga County Treasurer, discusses the explosion of private mortgage foreclosures and the resultant rash of vacant homes plaguing Cuyahoga County and threatening the stability of its neighborhoods at noon on Friday, August 17, 2007, at The City Club of Cleveland. He also will touch on the role of the changing home mortgage lending industry, Wall Street, uneducated borrowers, a decades-long lack of oversight by the state of Ohio, and a weak local economy, as well as local and state efforts to combat this increasing problem.
Rokakis took office as treasurer in March 1997 after serving for more than 19 years on Cleveland City Council, the last seven as chairman of the finance committee. He has brought sweeping reform to the treasurer's office, overhauling county property tax collection system and improving the county’s investment function. He was recognized as having the best-performing portfolio among Ohio County Treasurer’s.
Rokakis also worked successfully to pass House Bill 371 that allows county treasurers in Ohio’s largest counties to sell their property tax liens to private entities, spearheaded House Bill 294 to streamline the foreclosure process for abandoned properties, and was instrumental in creating Cuyahoga County’s “Don’t Borrow Trouble” foreclosure prevention program.
In 2007, Rokakis received the NeighborWorks America Local Government Service Award and the Leadership in Social Justice Award from Greater Cleveland Community Shares, and was named the County Leader of the Year by American City and County Magazine.
Tickets for this City Club Friday Forum are $18 for members and $30 for non-members. Lunch is included. Reservations are required at least 24 hours in advance of the event. They can be purchased by calling The City Club at 216.621.0082 or visiting the website at www.cityclub.org.