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Indiana House passes two neighborhood improvement bills advanced by Moed

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For immediate release:
Feb. 19, 2013


INDIANAPOLIS - Rep. Justin Moed (D-Indianapolis) today successfully passed two bills through the Indiana House of Representatives to revive neighborhoods and improve safety.

The first bill, House Bill 1568, reestablishes an Urban Homesteading project that can help find owners for abandoned houses more quickly. People who are preapproved for an FHA Renovation Loan could purchase abandoned homes or vacant properties for $1, provided they fix up the home and live there for at least three years.

“We’re providing local communities with tools to improve the value of their neighborhoods,” he said. “This will allow urban homesteading for folks in our community that want to live in and revive our neighborhoods.”

The bill also would help solve the problem of abandoned housing by allowing homeowners of adjacent properties to purchase an abandoned home or vacant lot for $1.

“This is an important piece of legislation,” said Moed. “It will help struggling communities improve their property values and make their neighborhoods cleaner, safer and better places to live.”

The second bill to pass was House Bill 1441, which deters the theft of catalytic converters and copper HVAC coils in local communities by limiting who can sell these metals to scrapyards to people who can prove ownership of the materials or who work in the HVAC or automotive industries. Moed believes this would provide extra layers of protection against theft.

“Communities face a common struggle with theft of catalytic converters and copper coils, which people can turn into scrapyards for cash,” said Moed. “This legislation would limit the sale to those who rightfully have possession of the items, which will prevent theft and keep our neighborhoods safe.”

Prior to the beginning of this session, Moed named one of his top priorities as helping put neighborhoods first, and his two bills have been bipartisan efforts to work toward that goal.

House Bill 1441, coauthored by Rep. Jud McMillin (R-Brookville), passed through the House 84-5. The bill also was supported by City-County Councilor Jeff Miller (R-Indianapolis), the Indiana State Police, and the scrapyard industry.

House Bill 1568 passed with a vote of 14-6.

Both of these bills will now advance to the Senate for further consideration.

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