Residents losing homes make plea to Garden City council after pizza party

A week after an infamous pizza party cut a council meeting short a week ago, Garden City residents had another meeting end early.

- There were fireworks at Monday's Garden City's  council meeting following the abrupt end to last week's meeting that left some residents angry and confused.

The meeting tonight in Garden City got so heated between those who pay taxes and those losing their homes to foreclosure, that council members lost control and walked away during the middle of comment.

A council meeting hijacked and members were unable to get the crowd under control. So they walked away.

They walked away from a special meeting called after the public wasn't heard earlier this month during a council member swearing-in ceremony. The public told then there would be no comment due to a pre-planned pizza party.

Those same people stepped to the podium Monday night.

"We deserve the chance to work with the city and be able to stay in our homes," said one resident.

At the heart of it, families behind on taxes whose homes were sold by Wayne County to developers like Cheryl Foster who says she paid off her mortgage then fell behind on taxes.

She says she was on a payment plan when her house was sold from under her.

"They don't care there is more to this."

Foster and others got in a shouting match with taxpayers who say the city shouldn't be responsible for saving a home lost to taxes.

"What about tax payers that do pay," said resident Judy Sheiko. "It is putting a burden on the city."

In the middle of it all the garden city council, their mayor, Randy Walker, says their anger is misdirected.

"The city did not foreclose on the homes that were done by Wayne County, by state law," Walker said.

An attorney representing 17 families facing foreclosure says the houses were taken based on greed.

"They were cherry-picked owner occupied homes that were in payment plans," said attorney Tarek Beydoun.

He argued the city council can still reverse the decision, but no action was taken by the council. 

After the crowd calmed down, the council returned only to say they have no further comment and adjourned the meeting.

As for what's next, the lawyer says he is working on a class action lawsuit and thinks this will likely be decided by a court.

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