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Councilman wants cleanup crews to be able to enter locked lots

Councilman Kenyatta Johnson on Thursday introduced legislation allowing city cleanup crews to cut the locks of fenced-in vacant lots to gain access.

councilman kenyatta johnson Councilman Kenyatta Johnson wants city cleanup crews to be able to cut locks in order to enter vacant lots.
Credit: File photo / Rikard Larma

Councilman Kenyatta Johnson on Thursdsay introduced legislation authorizing city work crews with the Community Life Improvement Program to gain access to fenced-in blighted lots.

The bill would allow CLIP workers, who are currently not authorized to enter gated and locked lots, to cut locks in order to get inside, provided they have the approval of the Managing Director's Office.

They would then be able to assess possible citations and clean up eyesores.

Johnson said Thursday he brought forth the measure after receiving calls from constituents about landowners who use lots as dumping grounds, perpetuating blight.

"There are a total of 3,200 of these fenced-in lots throughout the city of Philadelphia, so I look forward to discussion and creating an action plan regarding how do we clean up the abandoned lots," he said.

Johnson further added he feels land bank legislation that will undergo a committee hearing next week will work in tandem with the bill to help further his goal.

"It goes a long way to this issue, how can we get [the lots] cleaned up, and also get them developed so we can provide more revenue to our city," he said.

The bill will be debated at a committee hearing before it goes up for a vote.

 
 
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