Three stories making news across the Midwest today:
1. Mixed Chicago foreclosure news. The number of foreclosure filings in the Chicago area fell in September, but that doesn’t necessarily mean the crisis is dissipating. Our partner station WBEZ reports it’s merely getting dragged out. Ed Jacob, head of a city non-profit that helps people stay in their homes, says banks are taking more time to make sure their foreclosure paperwork is in order, and a backlog has been created that may take two to three years to process. “It’s a slow slog,” he tells the station. “It’s like we’re running through quicksand or we’re running through mud.”
2. Ohio examines municipal collaborations. Founded seven years ago, a group examining consolidation and collaboration among Ohio municipalities is finally gaining some traction. Many officials discussed the topic at a regional conference held in Akron on Thursday, according to our partner station Ideastream. “We’ve identified about 250 efforts of some kind, and then over half of those efforts have actually culminated in some ongoing collaboration,” John Hoombeck, director of the Center for Public Administration and Public Policy, tells the station. The highest numbers of collaborations have come in public-safety areas. Economic development ranks second.
3. Ford contract in jeopardy. With a little more than a third of voting completed, Ford workers are narrowly supporting the automaker’s tentative contract with the United Auto Workers union. As of 11:30 a.m. on Friday morning, 50.8 percent of voters supported the contract. According to the UAW Ford Department, 6,271 workers had voted in favor of the deal, while 6,085 had rejected it. Thirty-six percent of votes had been received, with voting set to end Tuesday. The numbers represented a swing from earlier results, in which 53.2 percent of the counted votes had nixed the deal.