Milwaukee officials stood inside a cold, abandoned house Friday, and asked the State of Wisconsin to send over more foreclosure assistance money that was used elsewhere in the state budget.
A national legal settlement about foreclosures and mortgage abuses this year sent Wisconsin more than $100-million. Governor Walker diverted $24 million to the overall state budget. Milwaukee officials have been arguing that the governor and Attorney General J.B. Van Hollen took away funds better spent dealing with the growing number of decaying, abandoned homes Milwaukee and other cities have purchased and plan to resell or tear down. Barrett and two Milwaukee alderman stood amid the broken glass, and peeling paint of what used to be a dining room and said the state can afford to give up more funds.
"Now the state is saying it doesn't have a deficit," Barrett says.
The state justice department and governor's office declined to comment on Barrett's latest request, saying they had nothing to add to previous responses. This month, Van Hollen announced one million dollars from the national mortgage settlement would go to demolishing blighted properties in Milwaukee and other communities.