Kasich signs bill banning plywood on abandoned properties

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) - Boarded-up property will no longer be synonymous with blight in Ohio.

With the governor's signature Wednesday, the state has become the first to outlaw the use of plywood on abandoned and vacant properties.

The prohibition was tucked into one of 28 bills signed by Republican John Kasich.

It's a boon for a practice known as clear boarding, which has been catching on around the country. Fannie Mae, the federal government-sponsored mortgage association, has been using the clear polycarbonate windows and doors for several years and, in November, declared plywood unacceptable for securing vacant properties. Cleveland-based SecureView is a key maker of clear board.

The company's founder, Robert Klein, calls the Ohio law a "significant advancement" in the fight against urban decay.