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Council Members, Groups Call on Mayor to Reduce Risk of Foreclosure for City Homeowners

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Some City Council members and advocacy groups are calling on the mayor to reduce the risk of foreclosure for the city's homeowners.

They're citing a report that says tens of thousands of mortgage holders are still at risk from the 2007 housing bubble.

They say the best way to combat this is for the city to use eminent domain to buy back underwater mortgages.

This would provide relief for owners who are in debt for more than their house is worth.

"The city can certainly seize these mortgages," said City Councilman Donovan Richards of Queens. "For too long, the banks have got their bailout and have done well, but the people have not gotten their bailout."

"The city can take them over and work out a refinance of the loan. That would be fair to families and would allow them to stay in their home," said City Councilman Mark Levine of Manhattan.

The plan would allow the city to refinance the existing loans so they match the home's current value.

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