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ISSUES

Help us End Blight in Pennsylvania

Hundreds of thousands of blighted or abandoned buildings are spread across Pennsylvania, impeding community and economic development programs and conveying images of old, worn out communities.
At the Housing Alliance, we see these properties in our communities not as the eyesores they are today, but as untapped assets that provide land for redevelopment. Abandoned land, when transformed into productive re-use, is a critical opportunity for our older communities to modernize, revitalize, and grow, and to improve the quality of life for neighbors who are already there.
While addressing blight is a local concern, the solutions are largely enabled by state law. Over the past several years the Pennsylvania General Assembly, in response to demand by local communities, has begun to modernize antiquated laws that stand in the way of local efforts. New individual laws are beginning to weave a policy infrastructure to transform blighted and abandoned property into quality homes people can afford, gardens and farms for fresh food, new businesses and industries that create local jobs.
Check out PAblightlibrary.com for a collection of land bank resources as well as the digital version of “Blight to Bright” a manual of effective tools available to return vacant properties to productive use.

 

News

  • Blight & Land Banks

    • Blight to Bright Program Planned for Lackawanna County

      Lackawanna County is launching a program to help communities fight blight. Based on a model proven successful elsewhere in Pennsylvania and made possible by a $65,000 state gaming grant, the Blight to Bright initiative launches this spring. The Lackawanna County …more

    • Bi-Monthly Land Bank Call Friday, February 16th, 2018

      Tax Sales – Hear from Stacy A Phile, Director, Berks County Tax Claim Bureau, as she shares strategies and methods for keeping bad actors from purchasing at tax sales. Legislative Update – Learn about the latest legislative news impacting blight …more

    • Task Force addresses blight

      City group prepares to detail draft plan, its top priorities Jan 15, 2018 AltoonaMirror.com The city’s Blight Task Force is ready to go public. Having met three times, beginning in September, the group will hold its final — and first …more

    • Homes Within Reach Workshop Powerpoints

      Published: December 14, 2017 Thanks to all who attended our 13th annual Homes Within Reach Conference! We had over 830 attendees and over 165 sponsors, which makes it the most successful conference yet. This year’s theme was “Shining Our Light …more

    • Braddock community steps up fight against blighted properties

      By: WPXI.com News Published: Nov. 29, 2017 One local community is planning to fight blight. All across Pittsburgh and the surrounding communities, there are buildings standing empty and unattended. From the boarded-up windows, to overgrown grass, you can understand why …more

    • Editorial: Adopt fee to accelerate blight fight

      By: Editor, Scranton Times Tribune Published: November 21, 2017 Lackawanna County’s innovative new land bank has gotten off to a good start in its efforts to prevent and reverse blight, improve neighborhoods and spur development. But the Lackawanna County commissioners …more

    • City officials hear blight eradication plan 

      By Nancy Lowry, New Castle News Published: November 18, 2017 Before long, overtime parking night not be the only ticket-able offense in New Castle. A suggestion to issue similar fines to code violators has been made to city council. Since …more

    • Westmoreland could raze blight by raising real-estate filing fees

      By: Rich Cholodofsky, Pittsburgh Tribune Review Published: Tuesday, Nov. 14, 2017 Home buyers and sellers in Westmoreland County will pay an extra $15 in filing fees under a plan set to be approved Thursday. County commissioners expect to vote on …more

    • Land Bank Public Hearing Held November 14 at PA’s Capitol

      November 15, 2017 The House Urban Affairs Committee held a land bank hearing November 14 to discuss the progress of land banks in Pennsylvania. The five year anniversary of Act 153, which made it possible for land banks to be …more

    • Somerset County to begin collecting blight-busting fee on deeds, mortgages

      By: Mark Pesto, Johnstown Tribune-Democrat Published: November 1, 2017 SOMERSET – In an effort to make a dent in the number of blighted properties in the region, the Somerset County Board of Commissioners resolved Tuesday to begin assessing a fee …more

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