County properties evaluated by local land bank


Next meeting set for after the first of new year

By Tim Colliver - tcolliver@aimmediamidwest.com



Land Bank board member Jeff Duncan is shown during Thursday’s virtual meeting.

Land Bank board member Jeff Duncan is shown during Thursday’s virtual meeting.


Screenshot by Tim Colliver | The Times-Gazette

Members of the Highland County Land Reutilization Corporation met virtually Thursday morning via ZOOM to discuss current blighted property acquisitions and prospects for procuring additional properties in the city of Hillsboro.

Information from Thursday’s agenda showed the land bank was evaluating eight properties in Hillsboro that have either been abandoned or are vacant due to the death of the owner.

Highland County Community Action Organization Housing Director Mark Current said during the meeting that a property on McClain Avenue in Greenfield would not be acquired by the HCLRC since squatters currently occupy it.

He said the couple had utilities in their names and were paying the bills, and acquisition would require eviction proceedings, adding that the organization could not take possession of property that is currently occupied.

Two parcels on Carford Place in Greenfield will be acquired by the land bank, the agenda stated, since details were being worked out with Fannie Mae to transfer the parcels to the land bank.

A title search will need to be initiated on another Greenfield property on Cameron Drive, Current said, and a person had expressed interest in purchasing a parcel on Dutch Street off of McCoppin Mill Road in the Rocky Fork Lake area.

In other business listed, two other properties in the Rocky Fork Lake area were in the process of foreclosure, and Current said the land bank was still pursuing the vacant Rocky Fork Lake Truck Stop property, despite there being a $450,000 mortgage on it through Rockhold, Brown & Co. Bank.

He said that a parcel on Heather Moor Trail was set for closing on Monday, Nov. 23, and the board approved a motion to advertise to area realtors that two parcels on Cinderella Drive were available.

In terms of new business, the land bank was considering eight properties in Hillsboro, with both Current and board member Jeff Duncan indicating that they would be taking contractors around so they could ascertain rehab possibilities or demolition planning. Those properties are:

• 540 Johnson St., on which Current indicated he was planning to file an ordinance violation in court. He said to the best of his knowledge, the owner was deceased, leaving delinquent taxes totaling $13,233 on land valued at $16,900.

• 229 E. South St., which land bank papers said had a tax mailing address and deed to a woman in Englewood, Fla. Back taxes on the property totalled $4,354 with a land value of $17,100.

• 256 E. Walnut St. was described in the agenda as a property with “major potential.” The owner died in September 2019 with no known relatives, and the property had a person interested in buying it. Delinquent taxes amounted to $1,039, with the owner passing away before paying second half 2019 taxes.

• 235 Willow St. was described as a property which the city currently mows. Taxes due are in the amount of $6,224 on land valued at $16,200.

• The city is also mowing a property at 305 E. South St., which had delinquent taxes of $8,357 on land valued at $13,500.

• 608 S. East St. was the home of the owner’s grandmother, and the agenda showed that back taxes amounted to more than the worth of the land. Delinquent taxes totaled $7,633 on land valued at $6,200.

• According to Thursday’s agenda, the owner of a property at 622 S. East St. desired to have the land bank “take it off her hands.” Current indicated there were options within the city to release the deed. Taxes due were $7,535, with the land valued at $9,600.

• A house at 775 N. West St., stated as “isn’t in good shape” in the land bank agenda, had only one family member that responded to inquiries, indicating they wanted nothing to do with the house. However, a neighbor said they were interested. The back taxes due on it amounted to $2,880 on land valued at $21,700.

Members of the board of directors moved and approved a motion to set the next meeting of the land bank in the new year, at 9a.m. Jan. 21, in the large basement meeting room of the Highland County Administration Building.

Reach Tim Colliver at 937-402-2571.

Land Bank board member Jeff Duncan is shown during Thursday’s virtual meeting.
https://www.timesgazette.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/33/2020/11/web1_Jeff-Duncan-at-land-bank-mtg-19-Nov.jpgLand Bank board member Jeff Duncan is shown during Thursday’s virtual meeting. Screenshot by Tim Colliver | The Times-Gazette
Next meeting set for after the first of new year

By Tim Colliver

tcolliver@aimmediamidwest.com