The Palm Beach Post from West Palm Beach, Florida on December 12, 1976 · Page 77
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The Palm Beach Post from West Palm Beach, Florida · Page 77

West Palm Beach, Florida
Issue Date:
Sunday, December 12, 1976
Page 77
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D6 Palm Beach Post-Times, Sunday, December 12, 1976 Slums From Dl- The higher rents forced many black homeowners to rent rooms in order to meet the higher payments. At one time, 31 per cent of the blacks on the South Side were living in someone else's home. Mrs. Langford said blacks "would buy the big houses and they would have no trouble cutting them up and filling them up. "So, you have a neighborhood where you have one white family owning a three-story mansion," Mrs. Langford said. "Then you put 20 families in. How do you expect the lillies to still grow out on the start 10 years ago, but now two of its biggest department stores, Sears and Wieboldt's, have left. In late fall of 1974, Wieboldt's employes arrived for work on a Monday to find the department store boarded up because of a sales drop. "They didn't even wait for Christmas," said Fred Henderson, executive director of the mall commission. Sears closed last January, also blaming declining sales. Richard Drew of the Englewood Businessmen's Association said most of the other mall merchants report improved sales. However, the shopping area around the mall is starting to show the tell-tale signs, with more bars, storefront churches and day labor manpower pools. areas flared into violence. In 1919, the city had its first full-fledged race war. Anna Langford, a black lawyer and former Englewood alderman, said the Realtors set the tone for the continuing racial battle by adopting the restrictive covenants. For years, even the FHA went along with the nonlegal agreements. "The real estate board actually said that 'we can't stop the influx of blacks, but we can contain them,' " Mrs. Langford said. "They would not rent or sell to any black persons unless it was already in the black belt or in a block that was contiguous to the black belt." Another practice designed to stop the black expansion was price boosting. Real estate agents routinely charged blacks rents 10-15 per cent higher than rents for white. more than 900 crimes in the area in September of this year, including 19 rapes and seven murders. "We have been trying to get the message across that we are the ones incarcerated in our own neighborhoods," she said. "We are the ones behind bars. University of Chicago sociologist Frank Zimring says "nobody gives a damn" when a crime involves only blacks, not even when the crime is murder. Zimring, who is studying violence in Chicago, said the chances of a black male being murdered in that city is 10 times greater than that of a white man. Most, experts consider the high unemployment rate in Englewood the major cause of the persistently high crime rate. Englewood is 92 per cent black and the area unemployment was estimated at between 30 and 40 per cent in September. Some experts projected the jobless rate for teen-aged blacks to be 80 per cent. Commander Fred Rice of the Chicago police district that includes Englewood said crime was down in his district by a 20 per cent in 1975. Rice, a black, credits community involvement and the demise of street gangs. He said that big street gangs such as the once powerful Black Stone Rangers have disappeared because their leaders are either in jail or dead. However, a patrolman who mans one of the 26 police car beats in Rice's district, sees a different reason for the decline in crime. "Things are not so bad out here," officer Raymond Bibbs said, playing the spotlight of his squad car across the vacant lots to an abandoned 18-unit, brick apartment building. Bibbs and his patrol car partner, officer William Fields, said their jobs were easier now because so many people have abandoned the area, leaving behind vacant lots and empty buildings. The building that Bibbs inspected with his spotlight was built less than 10 years ago. Yet, all of the windows were shattered, the electrical wiring and plumbing had been ripped from inside the walls and door sized holes were punched through the plasterboard. Officer Field said the residents of the apartments destroyed the building after the landlord raised the rent higher than they could afford. THOUSAND PINES 33 Country Estates 2 miles west of the Florida Turnpike on Okeechobee Blvd. James K. Siebrecht, Riiltor Palm Beach, Fla. 655-7034 PRODUCE MERCHANT SPECIAL M CUCUMBERS S'ea. M TOMATOES 19'lb. A half century ago, Englewood was a better place to live. But it was a better place to live for the white European immigrants who flocked to the Windy City to work in mills and big stockyards. The blacks were trapped in the ghetto then by a series of neighborhood agreements called restrictive covenants. The covenants weren't law, but had nearly the same effect. They usually , represented an agreement signed by a majority of property owners in a neighborhood. In the exclusive lakefront community of Hyde Park, a manifesto written in 1909 contained the heart of most of the covenants. It prohibited Realtors from selling blacks property on "white blocks" and barred white landlords from hiring black janitors. However, the blacks were migrating to Chicago from the South at record levels and pushing for places to live. yt mum ueli hackii-iani LEAN IOIIED MAM SI. 591b. ADV. ADV. The speculators not only managed to more than double the prices of the homes, but also squeezed out profits of about $250,000, less whatever was spent on repairs. ; It was impossible to determine how much the speculators spent on repairing the houses, but many buyers complained that their homes were in bad shape when they moved in. Mrs. Herman Nelson said there was no heat in the upstairs of her West Englewood horn1, the stairs were dry rotted ap' collapsing, the carpeting was rot and had to be replaced. She saiL tne roof leaked and the chimney needed tuck pointing. Total cost of repairs: $2,300. "I wouldn't have never owned a house if I'd known there would be these kind of problems," she said. Mrs. Nelson bought the house for $16,500 from Lamplighter Realty on March 21, 1975, with a VA-insured loan. Lamplighter, using trust account number 32728 at the American National Bank, had bought the house for $8,500 just four months earlier. That same trust account did even better last April, buying a West Englewood home for $3,000 and selling it in September for $19,000 to Harry Bernard. Why would a home owner sell his house for $3,000 when it could be worth $19,000? Fear was working on Christopher O'Dwyer when he sold his West Englewood home for $10,000 cash and moved to the far southwest side. It mattered little to O'Dwyer that his house later sold for $17,500. "I was willing to take that beating," O'Dwyer said. "I didn't want to get my head busted." O'Dwyer, who is white, blamed the government, particularly the Federal Housing Administration, for his losses. He said government insured mortgages to unqualified buyers was the main cause of neighborhood decline. "I would live in an integrated neighborhood," O'Dwyer said. "The blacks are the finest people to live with. But you can't bring in certain whites or certain blacks. They're not going to qualify to own a home." A black family that moved from the South Side into Marquette Park blamed crime and the fear of crime. Leon and Shirley Brown said their home was robbed repeatedly. Once the burglar even used a shopping cart to collect his spoils. Brown said the siren-type burglar alarm on his car went off every night. "Finally," he said, "they just wrecked the car. "I'm a working man," Brown said, "and the poorer class of blacks is just waiting to see what I've got so they can rip me off." Brown said he decided to move when blacks in the area beat and killed a deaf and mute woman in a $20 robbery. Shirley Brown said, "The blacks are trying to escape crime, too." Mrs. Doris Worthington knows about black-on-black crime. Mrs. Worthington has lived in Englewood for 30 years and operates a state-funded crime crisis telephone line. She works with both victims and criminals. "People in Englewood are afraid because there is something to be afraid of," she said. Even though crime in Englewood is down from the 1974 highs, Mrs. .Worthington noted that there were When banks see the abandoned buildings, Bradford said, they refuse to make home loans in the community and lend, instead, . in the suburbs. It's the practice called redlining. "It's like a big vacuum cleaner sucking the money out of the neighborhoods and putting it in the suburbs," Bradford said. "Then, the other resources are pulled out." Most Chicago banks deny redlining practices and protest that insurance companies forced the disinvestment in the inner city. John E. Pakel, executive vice president of the Chicago Savings and Loan Association, said insurance companies started using a red pen "to outline areas where they would not insure." Four banking sources said the insurance companies hiked their homeowners insurance rates in inner city areas to an average of $616 for a 35-year-old brick house, while setting rates at $108 a month for a similar suburban home. "They're giving him a high premium, crossing their fingers that he won't take the policy," one source said. The alternative is the Illinois Fair Plan, a state-run insurance pool funded by all the insurance companies which offers minimal coverage and takes up to six weeks for approval. But the figures indicate many banks serving areas like Englewood have disin vested. The Marquette National Bank in 1974 received savings deposits totaling $88.5 million, including $75.1 million, or 85 per cent, from the city. However, the bank invested $2.3 million, the bulk of its mortgage money, in the suburbs with just $1.9 million, or 45 per cent, going back into the city. . Englewood and West Englewood provided 38 per cent of the savings deposits for the Chicago City Bank and Trust Co. in 1974, but the bank invested less than 4 per cent of its mortgage money in the area. When the banks invested their conventional mortgage loans outside of the inner city, Realtors and home buyers turned to the FHA and VA. The Metropolitan Area Housing Alliance in Chicago revealed that in 964 less than 10 per cent of the mortgages made in West Englewood were backed by the FHA and VA and 74 per cent were covered by conventional loans. Ten years later, 10 per cent of the mortgages were conventional, 85 per cent FHA and VA. Bradford said that when the banks disinvest, there is no chance for the area to remain middle class. "All the people who have resources leave," Bradford said. "In order to make profits, the Realtors keep on peddling houses to blacks, they steer the people in. "The shopping area begins to go down, the merchants pull out, it becomes less and less attractive to middle income blacks and they begin to pull out . . ." It's the end of the cycle. Englewood seems to be nearing the end of the cycle, although the government poured in millions of dollars to keep it stable. The federal government put up $10 million and city and local merchants provided $7 million to build an 86-acre shopping mall in Englewood. The mall was off to a successful AN UNJUST SYSTEM America stands out as a bright gem of the free enterprise system. The education bill though is about $120 billion, almost as much as defense and food stamps combined. Paul Harvey, in a recent article, compared food stamps and football to the old bread and circus that led to the fall of the Roman Empire. When the $120 billion cost is ignored and 98 of the largest banks' assets escape school levies, one thinks the system is not only unjust, but is criminal. Five of the six current or former Illinois legislators accused of taking bribes from the ready-mix concrete industry have been found guilty. Testimony during the six-week trial revealed a deplorable but not altogether surprising practice of buying votes in the General Assembly. When a Representative, who was later appointed a bank director admits he is working for the repeal of the intangible tax, which makes up 98 of the banks' assets, DOES THIS NOT BECOME BRIBERY AS W EBSTER DEFINES IT? A more recent headline "Scrap Property Tax" makes more sense. OVER 40 YEARS AGO A TAX STIDY MEETING STATED THERE ARE ONLY THREE THINCS TO TAX: SALES. SAMNGS. INCOME. MOST PEOPLE WANT MORE SALES AND SAMNGS. BIT WITHOIT INC OME THIS IS NOT POSSIBLE. Taxes should be assessed to pay government expenditures as simply and fairly as possible. They should not be as one leader stated, such an unholy mess that no one can unravel them. Sales tax is probably fairer than savings or property tax of every kind, but its like moving a mountain with a teaspoon, compared to our modern equipment. INCOME IS THE BEST AND FAIREST TAX KNOW N. A GRADUATED INCOME TAX SHOl I D NOT GO TO THE EXTENT THAT THE WEALTHY ARE LEFT WITH NO INCENTIVE TO INVEST OR PRODICE. AT THE OTHER END OF THE SCALE PEOPLE HAVE TO LIVE AND HAVE AN INCENTIVE TO WORK. WITHOUT WORK AND TAXES INFLATION WILL BE OIR DOWNFALL. I will give $100 to charity if these facta are not basically correct. DALE ROE, 776 NE 47th St. Pompano Beach, Fla. 33064 Phone: 305-941-3093 Chicago started its history with a black population. The first permanent, nonlndian resident of the land on the southwest tip of Lake Michigan was Jean Baptiste Point Du Sable, a black who built a trading post in the 1770s at the mouth of what is now the Chicago River. In the early 1800s, Ft. Dearborn was built just across the river from Du Sable's trading post and the city grew around the fort. By 1840, enough blacks, fugitive slaves and free blacks, had settled in Chicago to support several churches. The migration of blacks into Chicago would continue for more than 100 years and the forces that shape and run the city were working to keep the blacks "in their place." By 1860, more than 1,000 blacks lived in Chicago. Illinois was a "free state," but blacks did not have the right to vote, could not testify against a white man in court and were not allowed to marry whites. ' By 1915, there were 50,000 blacks in Chicago, nearly all restricted to living just south of the booming business area that would become "the Loop." By the end of World War I, the blacks had pushed to 39th Street to the south and were trying to expand to the west. The pressure of the black growth into the European "It's hard to find a black neighborhood in Chicago that survives." That's the assessment of Calvin Bradford, a major University of Illinois-Chicago researcher into inner city problems. Bradford said pressures that work against black neighborhoods include: Federal programs, particularly the FHA. Fear and racial prejudice. Disinvestment or "redlining" by financial institutions. Disinvestment by major businesses and stores. Middle income blacks who move away. Bradford said the FHA program encourages blacks to move from apartments in the inner city and buy homes they can't afford to keep. "In essence, you end up with two abandoned units: the old apartment building ... and the abandoned home." ADV. ADV. HEALTH AGENCY MEDICARE SUPPLEMENT Providing LOW COST INSURANCE coverage to supplement Medicare .. . DOCTORS OFFICE, HOSPITAL, NURSING HOME Special Features: GUARANTEED RENEWABLE FOR LIFE NEW CONDITIONS COVERED IMMEDIATELY PRIOR CONDITIONS COVERED AFTER 90 DAYS, EVEN IF YOU HAVE CANCER, DIABETES, HEART CONDITION, HIGH BLOOD PRESSURE OR ANY OTHER ILLNESS FIRST 3 PINTS OF BLOOD THAT MEDICARE DOES NOT PAY. it PAYS MEDICARE DEDUCTIBLES EVEN THE FIRST $60 EACH CALENDAR YEAR PAYS IN ADDITION TO OTHER PLANS AUTOMATIC POLICY ISSUE UNDERWRITTEN BY AMERICAN SUN LIFE INSURANCE CO. Form 840 n mm jdan you are allowed up to $7500 under a similar plan, called Keogh.) This tax shelter for the little guy is more than just a way to keep from paying out money. It's also a way to earn money on the money you didn't have to pay out. And at Atlantic Federal Savings' new high 7- interest rate, it can add up to pretty big money at that. Visit any nearby Atlantic Federal Savings office and let us tell you more about IRA (or Keogh). The system that beats the System. ALSO AVAILABLE MAJOR MEDICAl-HOSPITALIZATION FOR PEOPLE UNDER 65 Up to now only certain people had the means to legally defer taxes on their income. Now, thanks to IRA, it's your turn. IRA stands for Individual Retirement Account. And at Atlantic Federal Savings it's yours for the taking. Here's what IRA is all about. By law, you may now deposit up to 15 of your salary (not to exceed $1500) into a retirement account for yourself and pay no taxes on the savings or interest until you take it out. In dollars, you're allowed up to $1500 if you're a wage earner not covered by a retirement program. (If you're self-employed, Contact our Speaker Bureau for Informative Medicare Information Progromi for Clubs & Meetings LOCAL P.B. COUNTY To obtain full Information on how you can take advantage of this most Comprehensive Plan, Mail coupon below or phone: TELEPHONE 1111 E. Atlantic Ave. Suite 308 SPANISH RIVER INN P.O. Box 144 Delray Btach, Fla. 33444 278-7500 734-2992 NOT AFFILIATED WITH PALM BEACH COUNTY GOVERNMENT AtlanticFederal fl: Savings and Loan Name (please print) Address City-County Age Telephone No. Offices in Dade, Broward and Palm Beach Counties For informal ion call Dade 944 0209 Broward 764 21 1 1 Palm Beach 832 8451 4217826 We believe this is the highest rate of interest being offered on IRA accounts at any financial institution in the area Early withdrawal, however, requires substantial interest penalty ' 1

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