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Oswego County land bank obtains first properties

Payne Horning

At its meeting Thursday, the Oswego County Legislature voted to sell six foreclosed properties to the county's land bank for $1 so it can begin the rehabilitation process. Oswego legislator Shane Broadwell said it's been a long road from when the land bank was approved for creation by New York state in January.

"We’re finally past all of the paperwork of creating a land bank," Broadwell said. "Now we’ve accepted and gone through the grant process, we’ve gotten grant funding and now the legislature is working with us to gift six of the low-hanging fruit, which was the bottom of the auction properties. It’s pretty exciting. We’re about to get to the point to put a land bank sign in a front yard and start to address those properties."

The six properties are a mix of residential and commercial buildings. Broadwell said a few will have to be demolished, but some of the original structures can be restored. 

The Oswego County land bank aims to emulate Syracuse's model of restoring abandoned and tax-delinquent homes. Watertown has expressed interest in creating a land bank as well.

Payne Horning is a reporter and producer, primarily focusing on the city of Oswego and Oswego County. He has a passion for covering local politics and how it impacts the lives of everyday citizens. Originally from Iowa, Horning moved to Muncie, Indiana to study journalism, telecommunications and political science at Ball State University. While there, he worked as a reporter and substitute host at Indiana Public Radio. He also covered the 2015 session of the Indiana General Assembly for the statewide Indiana Public Broadcasting network.