Suffredin- For a Better Cook County  
 

Accountability
Forest Preserves
Public Safety
Cook County Budget
Forest Pres. Budget
Property Tax Appeal
Health & Hospitals
Land Bank Authority
Policy Resolutions
Unsung Heroine

 

   
 
   
   
 
   
     
  Office phone numbers:  
   
 
 

Search current and proposed Cook County Legislation in Larry's exclusive legislative library.

   
 

The Cook County Code of Ordinances are the current laws of Cook County.

   
  The Chicago Board of Trade and the Chicago Mercantile Exchange trade 60% of the world futures contracts.
   
     
     
     



County official sees value in ‘land bank’ of foreclosed properties

Tuesday, May 22, 2012
Chicago Sun-Times
by DAVID ROEDER

Land banks, agencies set up to acquire vacant and foreclosed homes and make them community assets once again, work in Michigan, Ohio and New York and the idea should get a tryout here, said Cook County Commissioner Bridget Gainer.


She’s spent a fair amount of time on land banks, examining their impact elsewhere, considering models for governance and explaining the concept to mayors, developers and nonprofit groups. Gainer, who represents Cook County’s 10th District covering the North Side lakefront and Northwest Side, said she’s picking up support and hopes to bring a land bank ordinance to the County Board in a couple of months. She cited encouragement from Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle and Mayor Rahm Emanuel.

Land banks, she said, can deal with properties the marketplace has rejected. “There is such a disconnect out there,” she said. “You see people walking away from their homes, but there’s a long transition period to a new owner because of the backlog of foreclosures.” She said that in Cook County, it takes more than 500 days from the filing of a foreclosure to the awarding of a title.

That “limbo period” can hurt communities, she said, as neglected properties multiply.

Gainer said land banks can clear away title problems and back taxes, making properties attractive to buyers. Some major mortgage lenders, she said, are “chomping at the bit” to donate homes to such an agency.

A land bank here wouldn’t levy taxes and would be independent of any single government. Gainer has been looking at alternatives for private and public cooperation, perhaps having the program run by an experienced nonprofit group.

She estimated it would need about $15 million in seed money over three years, which could come from grants and Illinois’ share of a financial settlement for mortgage fraud. At least the robo-signing banks would be paying to clean up their mess.

Gainer said most land banks elsewhere are self-sustaining on money from rentals and property sales. She cited particular success in Flint, Mich.’s Genesee County and Cleveland’s Cuyahoga County. More information is at BridgetGainer.com.

FRANKLIN FODDER: Last month, I wrote about the Crown family and their development partners, Tishman Speyer Properties, pushing plans for an office building at the large vacant site at 130 N. Franklin. Since then, I’ve learned a couple of things.

One is that I have a rendering of the project by Krueck and Sexton Architects, the firm that designed the Spertus Institute on Michigan Avenue. The sharply angled glass of the Franklin Street project looks a lot like the Spertus building, so perhaps the Crowns should ask for more originality for their money.

I earlier spoke with family patriarch Lester Crown, who emphasized that tenants for the project are probably a long way off. Crown also voiced no regret for tearing down the old Chicago Mercantile Exchange, which sat on part of the property. The razing incurred the wrath of preservationists. Crown said he had to tear it down fast before the city landmarked the building, which he said would have been a mistake. “It was an inefficient use for the site,” he said.

NO NO NATO: For all the promises about the NATO Summit being a long-term boon to Chicago business, it was a short-term drag on it, judging from information gleaned from hotels and restaurants. Standard Parking Corp., the largest operator of parking garages in and near downtown, also took a hit.

Executive Vice President Steven Warshauer said that for Friday through Monday, Standard’s garages saw a 35 percent to 70 percent decline in business from a typical period. For Standard’s hotel garages, business was off an average 39 percent because NATO delegations didn’t need to park cars and other customers avoided downtown, he said. But Warshauer said he hopes Chicago’s exposure from NATO will pay eventual dividends.

STICKING AROUND: As the former ShoreBank and under its current name, Urban Partnership Bank has long operated from 7054 S. Jeffery. But its continuation there became uncertain after ShoreBank’s failure led to the property being controlled by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp., which put it up for sale.

Urban Partnership has announced its purchase of the site, offering the deal as evidence that it will remain in South Shore to practice its model of community banking.

DOING THE DEALS: In a sure sign that business is jumping, Missner Group built a 50,000-square-foot trampoline center for Jump America at 880 Lakeside Dr., Gurnee.



Recent Headlines

Study says property tax system favors rich
Friday, February 16, 2018
Chicago Sun-Times

Property Tax System ‘More Regressive’ in Cook County, Report Finds
Friday, February 16, 2018
WTTW Chicago Tonight

VIDEO: Cook County Jail detainees applaud CPD commander’s alleged killer
Friday, February 16, 2018
Chicago Sun-Times

Blockbuster report: How Cook County tax system shafts the little guy
Thursday, February 15, 2018
Crain's Chicago Business

Order over lawsuits in Dorothy Brown’s office put on hold by appeals court
Wednesday, February 14, 2018
Chicago Sun-Times

Dorothy Brown can't 'end-run' First Amendment, judge says in denying delay
Tuesday, February 13, 2018
Chicago Tribune

Cook County prosecutors toss more convictions tainted by corrupt ex-Chicago police Sgt. Ronald Watts
Tuesday, February 13, 2018
Chicago Tribune

Handwritten documents, Manila folders, carbon paper — welcome to Cook County criminal court
Monday, February 12, 2018
Chicago Tribune

2 Cook County Commissioners missed over a third of Forest Preserve meetings
Sunday, February 11, 2018
Chicago Sun-Times

Cook County Jail guards lock down sweet union contract—despite sour budget mess
Sunday, February 11, 2018
Chicago Sun-Times

Running for judge, Dorothy Brown’s inspector general accepts donation from bos
Friday, February 09, 2018
Chicago Sun-Times

Cook Co. President Urges Trump To Stop ICE Arrests In Courthouses
Wednesday, February 07, 2018
Beverly Patch

Voting in Jail? New Bill Seeks to Expand Ballot Access for Detainees
Wednesday, February 07, 2018
WTTW Chicago Tonight

COOK COUNTY BOARD COMMISSIONER PROPOSES HEARING ON POLICE OVERSIGHT
Wednesday, February 07, 2018
WBEZ BGA

Assessor Berrios Extends Deadline for Senior and Senior Freeze Exemption Applications
Wednesday, February 07, 2018
Special to suffredin.org

EDITORIAL: You can’t vote if you don’t have a ballot
Wednesday, February 07, 2018
Chicago Sun-Times

Early voting postponed as candidate nomination contested
Wednesday, February 07, 2018
Jacksonville Journal Courier

Jail Population Plunge Has Been Good For Taxpayers, Dart Says
Tuesday, February 06, 2018
WBBM CBSChicago

Foxx: Berrios shouldn't use special state's attorney to fight ethics law
Tuesday, February 06, 2018
Chicago Tribune

EDITORIAL: Every suspicious Cook County death deserves a proper investigation
Tuesday, February 06, 2018
Chicago Sun-Times

all news items

Paid for by Larry Suffredin and not at taxpayer expense. A Haymarket Production.
^ TOP