Fairport Harbor leaders hope a little holiday spirit will help lead them to future business opportunities.
CLEVELAND - Harvey Green Sr. has lived on East 118th Street in Cleveland since 1967. He's seen his neighborhood take a dramatic downturn, especially in the past three years.
The block is now filled with 14 vacant and condemned homes, causing some of Green's neighbors to move out.
Green lives across the street from one of the blighted houses currently owned by Bryce Peters Financial Corp., and Blaine Murphy of Naples Florida.
Cuyahoga County prosecutors have charged Murphy with buying up dozens of Cleveland homes, allegedly using false identities and non-existent witnesses, and then trying to sell the homes to make a quick profit. Prosecutors say the effort has left Cleveland neighborhoods with more than 100 condemned homes that have reduced property values and increased criminal activity.
On Nov. 26, Murphy reached a plea deal with Cleveland Housing Court and agreed to pay $500,000 in fines and home demolition costs.
But so far the fines have done little to help residents like Green, who continue to live among these nuisance houses.
Green is hoping prosecutors will convict Murphy and issue a message to the Florida house flipper.
"Blaine, do you care about other people?" shouted Green. "I have children, and even though my children are grown, I would love for you give them the chance to live. We all got to pay for this, but I think that you Blaine should also pay, so you can be fair too."
Meanwhile, NewsChannel5 is trying to spark neighborhood involvement by residents who volunteer to make a difference when it comes to vacant and condemned properties. We're inviting them to report nuisance properties through our Building Better Neighborhood initiative.
Just send us pictures and information on vacant homes in your neighborhood and we'll forward the information to your city building department, in an effort to move the properties to progress.
We are also giving residents information on how they can volunteer in their neighborhoods to make them better with the Building Better Neighborhoods Volunteer Toolkit .
Those interested in starting a volunteer effort in their neighborhood can also contact Hands on Northeast Ohio for more information.
We'll continue to update you on the developing case against Blaine Murphy on NewsChannel5, and here on newsnet5.com.
Two families have a lot to be thankful for this Thanksgiving.
Greater Cleveland Habitat for Humanity gave thanks to its volunteers at its annual volunteer recognition meeting.
Business executives Chris Zito and Ed Crawford were given Our Lady of the Wayside's highest honor for their service to children and adults with developmental disabilities.
Cleveland Skylift announced phase one of its cable car plan, linking the newly proposed Hilton Cleveland Convention Center hotel with the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and the Great Lakes Science Center.
Volunteer experts with HandsOn Northeast Ohio report graffiti issues are on the rise. NewsChannel5 volunteers help with the clean-up.
NewsChannel5 is committed to Building Better Neighborhoods and we've teamed up with HandsOn Northeast Ohio to help clean up graffiti in Cleveland's Slavic Village neighborhood.
Greater Cleveland Habitat for Humanity launched its Slavic Village neighborhood revitalization initiative Thursday on Clement Avenue where two homes will now be renovated for first-time homeowners.
Cleveland residents will be issued a 65-gallon blue cart for recyclables and are now required to recycle glass, plastic, metal cans, cardboard and mixed paper items.