CAMDEN, N.J. (CBS) – Officials are moving to take over hundreds of abandoned properties across the city, hoping to turn them into occupied and taxable homes. The effort started in the city’s Cramer Hill section.

Standing in front of one of the first 59 properties to be taken over through the Abandoned Properties Act, Camden Mayor Dana Redd laid out the plan which in a matter of months will make at least 20 of them available on the open market.

“We have to make abandoned properties and vacant properties a priority if we are ever to move Camden forward. I don’t like them. You don’t like them. We don’t like them because they attract rodents and other unwanted elements in our neighborhoods,”she says such as criminals and drug dealers.

Other neighborhoods throughout Camden will put together lists of blighted properties to be submitted to the city for verification and approval to be added to the takeover list available to private citizens and developers alike.

Reported by David Madden, KYW Newsradio

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