She is openly soliciting your suggestions through her website from now until May 14th. As a foreclosure defense attorney and one of the people on the front lines of the housing crisis, I have more than a few ideas.
So Pam, please consider this my open letter to you and your office.
First and foremost, here is what you should NOT do with the money. Don’t throw it at principal reduction. It will have virtually no impact on Florida’s communities, it would be like throwing the money into quicksand.
So far, Florida’s efforts to offer financial relief to homeowners have just fallen flat.
Move The Banks Out of Your Cities
What you need to do Ms. Bondi, is use the money to make systemic changes to Florida’s housing market.
First, give the money to your towns and cities to clear out Florida’s foreclosure blight. Blight caused by the abundance of abandoned homes the banks own, but refuse to take care of.
I’ve long told my readers that banks are bad neighbors, and the Sun-Sentinel now has the numbers that make my case.
Ms. Bondi, despite what your boss says, banks are the problem and you need to get them out of your cities and towns. Give your local governments the ammo to do it.
Your local cities are already going after the banks to try to force them to maintain their homes, as any property owner SHOULD do, but liens and fines mean nothing to these “Too Big To Fail” banks.
So give the money to local Florida municipalities so they can condemn and demolish these eyesores. Then let the cities buy these properties from the banks at their ‘true value’ and auction them off. Let new homes be built.
This will stabilize Florida’s neighborhoods and the real estate market, and in the end reduce suburban blight.
Take Back Your Property Records
Next, support your local clerks by giving them some of the money to support their investigations into MERS. Banks have violated the rules of real estate ownership with this fraudulent record keeping system and thankfully a few clerks, both in Florida and across the country have taken action by filing lawsuits against MERS.
This is the type of action you need to be encouraging and funding. MERS has destroyed our recordation system and turned what once was one of America’s strongest selling points and turned it into a laughing stock.
Our ability to control property ownership records used to be protected by our government, but over the last few years records have been bastardized and suddenly we’re more concerned with protecting banks ownership interests instead of the rights of regular citizens.
The banks have lost control over their own mortgages and it’s time to give your clerks the ability to seize control of these records back from the banks.
Give All Your Constituents Access to Legal Counsel
Lastly, it’s important that anyone have the access to good legal advice when defending their home. Not everyone can afford to hire a foreclosure defense attorney, and when homeowners go without representation, the banks trample all over them.
There are not-for-profit legal counsels offering help to homeowners, but many are understaffed or undertrained. Pam you could help fund these centers with the foreclosure settlement money,
If needed, use the money to offer specialized training to their staffs, so they can offer the same legal advice I offer to my clients.
Homeowners need help in undoing the wholesale violation of their property and constitutional rights, rights which are the bedrock of this nation. They need these rights restored.
Finally if you have any funds left bring an anti-trust action yourself, on the grounds that the banks are too big, anti-competitive and have harmed the state.
From The Trenches,