Oakland County announces creation of the land bank authority

Oakland County announced Friday that they would be creating a land bank authority. 

Officials say the land bank authority will support economic growth and community revitalization through the strategic acquisition of properties. 

"The Oakland County Land Bank Authority enables us to expand our economic development toolkit so that we can directly address property vacancies, support new developments and return foreclosed properties to the tax rolls," said Oakland County Treasurer Robert Wittenberg. "It gives us the ability to strengthen our communities and neighborhoods by creating housing, public spaces, or other creative community uses."

Once a property is foreclosed for delinquent taxes, the land sale auction happens. Properties that aren’t picked up can then be transferred to the land bank. 

"We’ve been operating like a quasi land bank. When properties don’t sell at auction, we see what the best use is," Wittenberg said.

The next step in getting the land bank up and running. 

"We need board members. That application process will start some time in mid-July. We’re hoping to have the board up and running by mid-august," Wittenberg said.