SF considers taking over foreclosures banks refuse to help

September 9, 2013 12:00:00 AM PDT
San Francisco may consider forcefully taking over properties from banks that refuse to modify underwater mortgages.

Supervisor David Campos held a rally outside City Hall on Monday in support of the plan. It would be modeled after a city of Richmond program that would use eminent domain to seize and refinance properties at lower prices. That program is already facing a legal challenge. But Campos wants San Francisco to look into a similar plan.

"And I know that we have done a lot of work in very complicated areas where there are legal challenges, and there's no reason we should not explore something like that here," said Campos.

However, San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee says using eminent domain on underwater properties could damage the city's bond rating. Richmond's program is up for a critical vote at Tuesday's city council meeting. There are proposals to postpone it or kill it completely.

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