Spokeswoman Alyssa Strickland told the Free Press in an email "people doubted the DLBA could do this, but over the last eight years, we’ve proven not only that we can sell houses and target residential blight, but that we’re able to successfully do it at a speed that’s unprecedented anywhere in the country."
The dwindling inventory does not mean blight is eliminated from the city, Strickland added, but the focus moving forward will adapt to vacant land sales as the Land Bank's mission is to return blighted and vacant properties to productive use.
"There are still blighted houses and buildings out there that are privately owned and there will still be houses on the City’s demolition list, but the City is making great strides in wiping out blight and the Land Bank has tools to further that effort," Strickland said.
In a Wednesday hearing on proposed budgets, Land Bank officials asked the city for $11 million from the general fund for the 2023 fiscal year, which begins July 1, to help maintain operations and properties that could be put up for sale. Interim Executive Director Tammy Daniels said she expects to list the remaining 5,400 salvageable properties the end of next year.
“We don’t have enough money to maintain our properties. We have to be very strategic with the dollars that we have,” Daniels said. “What we have done strategically is to focus on salvageable structures to get those into the hands of private owners so that they can take care of them as quickly as possible. We have increased our sale of vacant land to transition that into private ownership so they can take care of it.”
The discussion was part of financial asks and previews this week from different departments to City Council as budgets are considered for the upcoming fiscal year.
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