The Pennsylvania General Assembly is considering creating “land banks” as a way to deal with vacant or abandoned properties. House Bill 712 (J. Taylor, R-Philadelphia) provides for the creation of land banks by counties, cities and/or boroughs with populations of 10,000. The proposed Land Banks Authority Act authorizes those municipalities to establish a land bank authority and sets forth the parameters by which the authority may act to acquire, manage and sell property. The Act expressly prohibits the use of eminent domain to acquire the targeted property. The bill passed the House by a vote of 190 to 8 and has been referred to the Senate Urban Affairs and Housing Committee.
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