March 2nd, 2009 1:47 PM by BILL WILBANKS
My spouse, the queen of my domain made a heart felt comment today in passing something to the effect that as few after school programs as we have available for our children and as much as society likes to complain about the problems of our youth today 'wasn't it something that the powers that be in Orange County, Florida were considering cutbacks on extra curricular school programs such as junior varsity sports and other programs and yet with a budget surplus were considering purchasing foreclosed and abandoned houses that they would repair and resell in the market'.
On the surface that's a fair question. But I reminded her of the 1970's and early 1980's when hundreds of boarded up HUD foreclosed homes covered this market during the bad markets and S&L crisis at the time. Many neighborhoods looked, and in many cases were, blighted by those homes that owners were either kicked out of or walked away from leaving remaining neighbors living next to yards that were knee to waste high, windows and doors that were plywooded over and crime and vandalism ran wild. The REO departments at the banks and S&L's didn't want to put any more money than they absolutely had to into maintaining them and they sat. Their neighbors suffered for years. So there is a definite logic to stepping up to the problem to the extent they can and I for one would much rather see a neighborhood revamped than worrying about the next bigger and better arena or monorail project for folks that either can actually afford a ticket to go or a tourist that wants a better ride to I-Drive. And JV sports is more important to me than either of them. But that's my opinion of course.
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