Metro Council member looking to take down blighted houses
BATON ROUGE - Metro Councilwoman Tara Wicker hopes clearing the blighted houses that sit near some schools could give students a new sense of hope.
"These kids going to school ... having to see those conditions puts them in a mind set of defeat," Wicker said. "They think no one really cares."
Wicker is pushing for the removal of abandoned and run down houses that sit within school zones.
Two houses near McKinley High School have already been removed, but that process took Wicker more than two years.
Wicker said she hopes to expedite the process so that kids won't have to see the shambled homes on their way to school.
Baton Rouge resident Darrelle Spencer has been living in Old South Baton Rouge for seven years. He says the number of abandoned homes in his neighborhood has only gone up.
"You got one corner where a house that got burned down, and on the next is a house that's falling apart," he said. "Knock them all down."
Wicker said she has placed the abandoned houses near Buchanan Elementary School on the city's emergency list for demolition.