Housing

Taking back Brockton

Taking back Brockton

Brockton officials cautiously eye eminent domain for underwater mortgages

If Brockton passes on the prospect of becoming the first American municipality to seize troubled mortgages by eminent domain, it won’t be because the city is worried it’s on the wrong side of the law. As Brockton begins a months-long study debating the use of eminent domain for mortgages, even the effort’s skeptics believe the(...)

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Eminent domain for mortgages

Eminent domain for mortgages

Brockton, other cities consider novel idea

ON THE MORNING OF SEPTEMBER 28, Brockton police arrested 51-year old Tyrone Hubbard and his two sons for trespassing in their own home. Fannie Mae, the federally chartered purchaser of mortgages, was foreclosing on Hubbard’s house and wanted him out. Trying in vain to make peace was City Councilor Jass Stewart, who had arrived to(...)

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Pairing social services with housing saves money, improves lives

Pairing social services with housing saves money, improves lives

It is a rare and precious thing in government when “doing good deeds” coincides with sound fiscal responsibility and actually saves money. Just in the last few weeks Beacon Hill legislators unanimously approved and Gov. Deval Patrick signed a bill that will help the Commonwealth’s most vulnerable populations meet their housing needs and avoid moving(...)

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What’s up with the sales tax?

What’s up with the sales tax?

Sales tax receipts normally behave like you’d expect them to: They rise when the economy is expanding, and fall when unemployment spikes. Data from across the country show that, historically, sales taxes track the business cycle closely. Over the past decade, though, the Massachusetts sales tax became decoupled from the state’s economy. Some revenue has(...)

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Essex official wants to sue over mortgage mess

Essex official wants to sue over mortgage mess

(function(d, s, id) { var js, fjs = d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0]; if (d.getElementById(id)) return; js = d.createElement(s); js.id = id; js.src = “//connect.facebook.net/en_US/all.js#xfbml=1”; fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js, fjs); }(document, ‘script’, ‘facebook-jssdk’)); John O’Brien is a national folk hero to anti-foreclosure activists. The Southern Essex Register of Deeds has garnered national attention by accusing big banks of acting like a “criminal(...)

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Going ‘Freddie’ in Florida

The Republican presidential primary entered a new and brutal phase when it rolled into Florida yesterday, with Mitt Romney going sharply negative on the suddenly re-resurgent Newt Gingrich. Romney is trying hard to link Gingrich to Florida’s depressed housing market via Freddie Mac, the bailed-out mortgage company that paid Gingrich $1.7 million to act as(...)

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