With the economy soft and thousands of Philadelphians delinquent on their mortgages, Sheriff Green this spring refused to hold a court-ordered foreclosure auction. His move raised eyebrows on the bench and dropped jaws among lenders and their attorneys, who accuse him of shirking his duty to enforce legal contracts.
It also prompted a sweeping, court-endorsed deal, scheduled to go into effect next week, that aims to help homeowners avoid foreclosure. Even as Congress moves forward with a federal plan that could insure up to $300 billion in refinanced mortgages, Mr. Green's unilateral approach has pushed Philadelphia to the leading edge of local responses to the national crisis.
"More of our neighbors, our families and our friends are falling behind on their mortgages and losing their homes" to foreclosure, the 60-year-old Mr. Green writes in a "Declaration of Neighborhood Stability" on his Web site, www.phillysheriff.com. "My staff and I watch the suffering every day and witness the heart-wrenching scenes as families lose their primary means of wealth-building and face eviction."
Friday, June 06, 2008
Posted by aimai at 4:53 PM