A mediation agency says Franklin County had more evictions filed over the past decade than any other county in the state.
Jim Letizia reports.
Community Mediation Services says the county has filed 19 thousand eviction notices a year over the last 10 years. Cuyahoga County was second with 12 thousand, despite having a larger population. The agency is calling for a greater focus on lowering the number of residents who face eviction, saying local homelessness is still at a high level. The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development's 'point-in-time' count in January showed an increase of 24 percent in Franklin County since 2010. Nationally, homelessness declined by 11 percent during that period. Community Mediation Services launched a housing stability and homeless prevention program five years ago in conjunction with the Franklin County Municipal Court. It has helped thousands of low-income residents resolve landlord-tenant disputes and get evictions dismissed, among other services. The agency is asking the county commission for funding, saying a grant to help run its Housing Stability/Homelessness Prevention Program is expiring. It costs the agency 300 dollars for each family it helps with housing stabilization, which is roughly ten percent of the cost of putting a family in a shelter.