The Chautauqua County Land Bank Corporation is looking into having Habitat for Humanity help rehabilitate properties controlled by the land bank.
Mark Geise, deputy director of the Chautauqua County Department of Planning and Economic Development discussed the topic at a meeting of the group Wednesday.
The Chautauqua County Land Bank Corporation, which was approved earlier this year, met to discuss organizational resolutions, board vacancies that were in need of being filled, its application for nonprofit status and other items including the recent land bank conference and New York State land bank summit that members had attended.
"I came back from our conferences and I called Habitat for Humanity right away. I have a meeting with them on Friday to talk to them about one of the properties in Jamestown," Geise said.
According to Geise, six properties were recently authorized for transfer to the Chautauqua County Land Bank, three in Jamestown, two in Dunkirk and one in Fredonia. In addition, the County Executive recently authorized the transfer of seven properties to their neighboring landowners with closing costs paid through the use of the Chautauqua County Land Bank's seed money.
"After coming back from the conferences, I think we're in a good position when I look at the work that we did on our business plan," said Geise. "Coming up with a real strategy of how to make this sustainable was so important to us. There are other land banks out there that are just getting everything that doesn't sell at the auction and I don't see how you make that sustainable at all. Buffalo, for example, is getting over 1,000 properties that didn't sell. To me, that would be overwhelming, but we have something that's manageable, that we've thought out so that it can be sustainable."
The next meeting for the Chautauqua County Land Bank is tentatively scheduled for Wednesday, Dec. 12.