CHICAGO - Ohio yesterday announced free legal services for struggling homeowners in a statewide effort to stem the tide of foreclosures after a year in which the state led the nation in the percentage of mortgage foreclosures.

More than 1,100 private attorneys have volunteered to mediate foreclosure court proceedings and help restructure loans for homeowners who earn less than $54,000 a year, said Gov. Ted Strickland in a press conference announcing the program.

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