Jesse Jackson Sr.: Chicago needs urban agenda

May 17, 2011

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The Rev. Jesse Jackson Sr. says fixing the housing stock should be a priority for Chicago’s new mayor.

Schools, safety and spending peppered Rahm Emanuel’s inauguration speech. But Jackson says there’s no urban policy plan in Chicago – it’s been abandoned.

"First of all you have 100,000 vacant homes and abandoned lots. These banks that foreclosed – there must be some plan for reconstruction," Jackson said.

Jackson said unemployed Chicago residents should be hired to help rebuild and restore homes.

Emanuel has said that as mayor he plans to do an inventory of abandoned buildings in the city. That includes implementing a fast-track program to tear down the most dangerous buildings -- or turn over a property to a developer.

This is supposed to start in Emanuel’s first year of office.