Missaukee examines land bank authority

May 16, 2019

By John Raffel

LAKE CITY — The Missaukee County finance committee, at its meeting last week, listened to a presentation on establishing a combined Land Bank Authority/Brownfield Redevelopment Authority, and how to use it to efficiently acquire, hold, manage and develop tax-foreclosed property.

The presentation came from county administrator Precia Garland and Lisa Reed, executive director for the alliance for economic success.

The committee put together a resolution which the Board of Commissioners would have to adopt and then have a public hearing.

Citing documented information, Reed pointed out to the committee a land bank is a public authority intended to acquire hold, manage and develop tax-foreclosed property plus other blighted and abandoned properties.

The presentation provided to the committee pointed out there were changes to Michigan’s tax foreclosure laws recently, which are helpful but a Land Bank concept enables the county to increase land sale proceeds resulting from higher property value.

Low-end speculation is eliminated as a result. It cuts back on contagious blight and cuts back the loss of local control which happens to property sales at tax auctions.

It was pointed out during the presentation that the proper procedure would mean the county board would provide for public comment on the creation of a Land Bank Authority and would pass a resolution creating the authority board. The county treasurer would set up an intergovernmental agreement with the state Land Bank Fast Track Authority and the board would appoint members to the authority board.

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