Good afternoon, Mr. President, ladies and gentlemen, members of Council. I am here today on behalf of the community which reared me in North Central Philadelphia, the community that I represent and represented, and the non-profit organizations that I work with all throughout the City to oppose the final passage of this Bill 130156-A, which means amended, the land bank bill on today, because I think that there's necessity for additional comment, additional knowledge on behalf of members of the community. People do not know about the far-reaching impact that this bill will have on the entire history of Philadelphia as we know it. And I would encourage all of the members of Council who sit in the public trust to think long and hard about transferring part of their power to a non-governmental, non-elected organization that is going to run the land that is going to repopulate the City of Philadelphia, because once that is done, that is an irreversible position, and all of the members of Council, it will be on you, and the people will consider what happened with this land that we call Philadelphia, and that would be based upon you.
Some of the specifics that are at issue are the fact that this concerns not only vacant land, it also concerns tax delinquent properties, which means a parallel administrative financial organizational structure is being created that potentially could override the existing structures that exist right now in the City of Philadelphia to manage and control land.
There's nothing more important than land, and we cannot take hasty action when land is at issue. So I urge you -- I don't oppose necessarily the passage of this bill. I oppose it in the position that it is in, and I think that the people of the City do not know what is going on and how important this is, and the people need to be heard. So I urge you not to pass this bill on today.
Thank you very much for your time and attention, and God bless you.