Land Banking
Proposed Amendments
Resources

Overarching Goals of the Amendments:

  • Greater community participation on the Land Bank Board of Directors and input towards the development of Policies and Procedures
  • Community-driven processes for objecting to disposition of properties; community plans and priorities given great consideration
  • Stronger language to provide greater protection and services for owner-occupants, including, but not limited to hardship payment plays, social services and life estates
  • Limited City Council and political influence with protections to ensure checks and balances

Community Participation on the Board:

Amendments made to Board Structure Section:                          

  • Board will consist of 9 members; 3 appointed by the Mayor, 3 appointed by City Council, and 3 community members elected by the other Board Members.  
  • Amendment says that the 3 community members shall be residents of, or work at the community-based organization, in the three Council Districts with the greatest number of vacant and distressed properties; one member shall be designated from each of the three Council Districts.
  • Mayor’s appointees shall have expertise in planning, real estate, and financial management.
  • Council’s appointees shall have expertise in community development and/or community organizing.

Oversight of the Land Bank, particularly in relation to Policies and Procedures:

  • Amendments require Land Bank Board to host no less than 5 community information meetings to present the draft Policies and Procedures.
  • Amendments allow for a 30 day public comment period.
  • Amendments provide City Council the ability to approve or reject the Policies and Procedures.

Concerns about Land Bank’s ability to take owner-occupied land:

  • Amendment references the Foley Settlement Agreement, in which the City is required to provide hardship payment plans to eligible owner-occupants who are unable to pay their current taxes.
  • Amendment states that “the preference of the Land Bank is to support homeownership and to avoid acquisition of Owner-Occupied residential property.”
  • Amendment says that the Land Bank shall ensure that there has been direct outreach to Owner-Occupants and offers of supportive homeowner services and social services, including but not limited to an application for a hardship payment plan or an appropriate payment plan on delinquent real estate taxes…
  • Amendment states that “The preference of the Land Bank upon acquisition of Owner-Occupied properties is to keep former Owner-Occupants in residential property…by way of a lease contract or the creation of life estate…”

Community involvement in the disposition (or sale) of property:

  • Amendments provide opportunity for community members to be notified of, and oppose, the disposition of property:
    • Community members will be notified via posted signage at the property and information will be made available electronically.
    • Community members will be responsible for filing a petition within 30 days of notice of sale; 15 signatures from nearby residents (radius to be determined by Land Bank Board) are required for it to be considered a valid petition.  
    • Upon receipt of petition, the Land Bank will be required to hold a pre-disposition Public Hearing in the neighborhood.  The Land Bank may approve a disposition request only if it determines, based on the testimony received, that the disposition would be consistent with the goals and needs of the neighborhood that is likely to create a beneficial impact on the residents of the neighborhood.   
  • Amendments state that the Board of Directors shall be guided by neighborhood plans, input from City Council Representative, and input from community groups in decisions regarding disposition of property.
  • Included in the amendments it states that if the neighborhood plans/priorities reflect a desire for low-income and affordable housing, the Land Bank Board shall give priority to those plans. 

Concerns about staff being able to approve sale of property under $50,000:

  • Amend legislation to remove this in its entirety.  Every disposition of property will be required to be passed by the Board.

Locally-Sourced, Minority and Women-Owned Business Enterprises, and Workforce Development Opportunities for Youth:

  • Amendment to Maintenance and Management Section:  In addition to giving preference for locally sourcing its partnerships, joint ventures, contracts, etc. for maintenance, amendments add that preference shall be given to minority and women-owned business enterprises and to organizations that provide workforce development opportunities for youth.
  • The Land Bank shall also give preference to companies that provide prevailing wages to its employees.   

 

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