After calls from FOX6, City of Milwaukee cuts grass in nearly-empty subdivision

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MILWAUKEE — Latosha McKinney says after repeated calls to City Hall pleading for someone to come out and cut their own grass, the weeds are finally down in the Josie Heights subdivision near 13th and Lloyd. McKinney says the city finally took action on Friday, July 20 just a day after an inquiry by FOX6 News.

“I love the area but the promises the city made, null and void,” McKinney said.

McKinney dreamed of the new neighbors she would have after moving to the area two years ago,  but instead of friendly humans she says all that’s moved in are animals like the raccoons she frequently captures on her surveillance cameras. She says the city is to blame. The Josie Heights subdivision remains largely empty.


Of the 36 lots on the property, only three homes have been built. McKinney says the city, who owns the unsold land, rarely comes to cut the grass which has allowed animals to move in.

“I have videos of generation of raccoons. Not families. Because it is more than five. So that’s a generation passing through us,” said McKinney.

Latosha McKinney

McKinney says in the last year, the city has only come by one time to cut the grass allowing weeds to grow several feet high. When she called City Hall for help, she says she got the runaround.

“I called neighborhood services, ‘Oh it’s forestry. Oh you got to talk to this person.’ I have so many names of people I have talked to,” said McKinney who joked she is likely known by name at City Hall.

Thursday, FOX6 called looking for answers. Jeff Fleming, a spokesperson with Milwaukee’s Department of City Development, says the issue was due to confusion over whose responsibility it was to cut the grass. Fleming says the problem has been resolved writing by email “between two different city departments and an outside contractor there’s been some confusion about who is going to take care of this… Bottom line is the grass will be cut tomorrow.”

The city lived up to their promise. McKinney says early Friday workers cut the grass. She is hopeful workers will return on a regular basis to maintain the property hopeful that it will attract others to purchase property in the subdivision.

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