Hartford to host town hall meeting about blight

Work done by Hartford's blight remediation team on Irving Street. (Hartford 311 Facebook photo)

Hartford's mayor is hosting a town hall meeting on Wednesday to tackle the issue of blight in the capital city.

Mayor Luke Bronin posted an event on Facebook to which he invited the community.

"Everyone is invited to my monthly town hall for June 2017," Bronin wrote in the event. "The topic is blighted properties and vacant lots in Hartford, but questions or comments on any topic are welcome."

Hartford 311, a group organized to streamline how Hartford residents request city services, posted some of the work done by blight remediation director Laura Settlemyer and the blight remediation team.

"Taking care of this problem isn't just about making neighborhoods feel good, it’s also about lifting up the value of homes," Bronin said.

The work was done on Irving Street, according to its post.

Donna McNair has lived on Irving Street for almost ten years. McNair said all of her neighbors in Hartford take pride in what their community looks like.

"They cut the grass, they paint their fences, clean the front of the house keeps the porch clean," McNair said.

The mayor said Hartford 311 is all part of beautifying Hartford.

"Blight can be a cancer on neighborhoods," Bronin said. "So we're making a concerted push to try and address the issue, make sure we're saving our old housing stock and strengthen our neighborhoods."

Bronin said they received funding for the city's blight remediation team through federal grants. The Hartford 311 team works closely with property owners, especially those who might not* be keeping up their properties around Hartford.

"If you can get their attention with an enforcement notice, and at the same time offer to work with them to know what they need to get done, it's really remarkable the transformation you can make," Bronin said.

The meeting is happening at the Parker Memorial Community Center on Main Street in Hartford.

Doors will open at 6 p.m. and the meeting should run until about 7:30 p.m.

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