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Group to put people to work repairing homes in danger of foreclosure

MILWAUKEE -- A Milwaukee group is finding a way to get rid of a few neighborhood eyesores while putting people back to work.

Members of Common Ground gathered Thursday, June 14th on the city's northeast side to launch 180 Degree Properties, LLC.

The new company's goal is to maintain houses in danger of foreclosure by hiring previously unemployed workers to repair them.

Common Ground received a half-million dollars from five major banks to fund 180 Degree Properties.

Milwaukee Alderman Michael Murphy said it's a creative way to solve one of the city's nagging problems.

"The group will then go out and hire people in the city of Milwaukee, in the community -- people who didn't have a job before, that are now responsible to take care of these properties, make sure the properties don't fall into disrepair, that it is secure, that it doesn't become a negative asset and get stripped.  They'll be responsible for securing the property, maintaining it, until Common Ground, working with the institution, is able to sell it on the open market," Murphy said.

Murphy said the effort to maintain foreclosures is starting on the city's west side -- an area hit hard by the housing crisis.

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