Landbank asking for $500,000 in funds for the demolition program

Members of the Guernsey County Land Bank continued discussions on Wednesday regarding its application for funding for the building demolition and site revitalization program ahead of Monday’s submission deadline.

The land bank has compiled a list of 11 properties in Cambridge, Byesville and Cumberland that could receive funding to be demolished under the program through the Ohio Department of Development.

And that number could increase by the February 28 deadline.

“It could easily double or even triple by Monday,” said Kim Conrath, code enforcement officer for the city of Cambridge, who is treasurer of the land reserve. “We are awaiting a list of properties from the Department of Health (County of Cambridge-Guernsey) that will be added to this list.”

The land bank board previously approved the funding request at the January meeting.

Properties proposed for demolition in Cambridge are located on North Fifth Street, South Seventh Street, Broad Street, North Sixth Street and Steubenville Avenue.

The five Byesville properties submitted by Mayor Jay Jackson are on South Second Street, Watson Avenue, Main Street, North Ninth Street and Race Avenue, while Cumberland’s only property is on West Main Street.

If approved, the program would provide up to $500,000 for demolition in Guernsey County.

Funding for the program comes through House Bill 110, which provided $150 million statewide, including the reserve for each county.

Kim Haught said funding would be available soon after state approval.

Reserved funds not used within one calendar year of the assignment date will become available for other grants through the state.

The land bank chose not to apply for a brownfields remediation program that could have provided up to $1 million in funding to help remediate hazardous substances or petroleum in an industrial, commercial or industrial property. county institution.

Program requirements, including an environmental study at the agency’s expense, prevented the land bank from submitting an application by the Jan. 30 deadline.

The council agreed it would be difficult to be ready to submit properties for approval under the brownfields scheme before the second and final application deadline in March.

In other cases:

  • Conrath provided council members with a list of properties currently held by the land bank, including a house on Woodlawn Avenue that has been sold and is awaiting an investigation in order to transfer it to new owners. Cambridge Mayor Tom Orr, who led Wednesday’s meeting, thanked Conrath for compiling the list of properties. “You did a great job and we appreciate you setting it up,” Orr said. “It’s a great starting point to be able to track these properties.” The list includes 28 properties located inside Cambridge and two outside the city in Cambridge Township and Pleasant City. Almost all of the properties are vacant lots and it is estimated that half of them meet the city’s requirements for home construction.
  • During the meeting, the council approved the sale of vacant land on South Eighth Street to a neighbor who submitted an offer of $1,500. Half a dozen others are in various states of purchase, two of which include contracts on two Wall Avenue properties and a mowing option to own vacant land on Clark Street in the city.
  • Members also discussed potential options for sites on which Habitat for Humanity could build new homes to meet housing needs in the county.
  • Orr said he was continuing discussions with two town residents interested in purchasing three lots at the corner of Beatty Avenue and Clark Street and converting the land into a small park with trees and benches. If a sale is approved by the land bank, the couple will transfer ownership to the city once the park is completed in exchange for maintaining the site. “We want people like that in our community,” Orr said.
  • Board member Jack Marlin will inspect a tree on property on the 600 block of Grant Avenue in Cambridge that is owned by the Land Bank after a neighbor reported members hitting his roof and falling onto his property. Marlin will determine if the tree can be pruned and maintained, or if it must be removed.
  • Conrath said the land bank’s bank balance is $40,063.92 after paying a quarterly bill totaling $61.50 to the State of Ohio, printing property sales contracts and depositing $4,862. proceeds from the sale of a property in Senecaville.

The land bank will then meet at 11 a.m. on March 23 at the county administration building.

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