New law takes aim at abandonment in Kansas City

KANSAS CITY, Mo. -– A Metro woman who has spent decades on the same block is excited to watch her street return to what is was during her childhood. A new Missouri law is cracking down on those who own abandoned homes and lots in KCMO, and neighbors are thrilled.

An abandoned corner house is just one of several left-behind homes on Davitta Hanson’s east Kansas City street. She said, “That corner house has so many memories in it for us. We’d run all up through the house and had all kinds of trap doors and little closest and stairways and to see it now is disappointing." Hanson said, "I remember as a child running up and down the street playing with our neighbors running back and forth across the street."

Hanson moved into her mother’s home last year – the same place she grew up. A new state law now holds companies accountable who own thousands of abandoned properties in Kansas City. Many are danger spots – exposed – a breeding ground for danger and possible crime.

Hanson said, “I remember as a child running up and down the street playing with our neighbors running back and forth across the street, and now to not have that is disappointing to me.”

The city told Fox 4 the new law is a giant tool to clean up the city – and with the governor’s backing – they now have the means to go after those responsible for what’s been left behind.

“I’m here working to make my home be more of a home and our neighborhood be more of a neighborhood,” Hanson said.

This new law also applies to the city of Independence.