New Jersey enacts Land Bank Law to help handle abandoned, vacant property

New Jersey: Gov. Phil Murphy has signed the New Jersey Land Bank Law into effect, following the State’s recent legislation efforts to establish a state-wide vacant property registration ordinance.

By creating an ordinance in the municipality, a municipality can create a land banking agreement to “establish the responsibilities of the land bank entity and shall specify the terms and conditions under which the land bank entity may acquire property on behalf of the municipality, demolish and otherwise clear buildings and conduct other site improvements located on the property, maintain and secure the property, conduct other activities on the property, and, notwithstanding the provisions of the 'Local Lands and Buildings Law,' P.L.1971, c.199 (C.40A:12-1 et seq.), sell, lease, or convey property held on behalf of the municipality,” according to the legislation.

Nonprofits, redevelopment entities, county improvement authorities, and departments and agencies of the municipality itself can be established as land bank entities, and a lank bank agreement may be terminated with 1 year notice.

Properties deemed vacant or abandoned, and then behind on taxes, neglected in need of repairs, or otherwise causing health, safety, or property devaluation issues to a community due to vacancy or abandonment, could be eligible for land bank consideration in order to help revitalize communities and get a handle on troublesome properties.




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