Monday, December 14, 2009

Ohio county land banking passes House committee

The Ohio House Local Government Committee has passed House Bill 313 (HB 313) out of committee by a 10-1 vote, bringing land banking authority for 28 Ohio counties closer to reality.

The legislation now goes to the full House for consideration.

Currently only available in Cuyahoga County, HB 313 would extend the opportunity to organize County Land Use Reutilization Corporations (CLRC) to counties with populations of 100,000 or more, including the Greater Cincinnati counties of Butler, Clermont, Hamilton and Warren.

Sponsored by representatives Peter Ujvagi (D-47th) and Roland Winburn (D-40th), the bill is viewed as yet another tool that local communities can use to deal with a glut of abandoned and vacant properties resulting from foreclosure and population loss.

A companion bill, Senate Bill 188, has been introduced by state senators Mark Wagoner (R-2nd) and Teresa Fedor (D-11th).

Land banking was one of 26 recommendations released last April in a Brookings Institution/Greater Ohio report (PDF) outlining specific action items to help reduce Ohio's problems with abandoned and vacant properties.

Previous reading on BC:
28 Ohio counties could acquire land banking powers (10/29/09)