Good afternoon, Council President Clarke and other members of City Council. My name is Rick Sauer and I'm with the Philadelphia Association of Community Development Corporations, which is also a member of the Philadelphia Land Bank Alliance.
We are encouraged by the strong support of City Council and the Nutter Administration for the creation of a land bank to reform our city's broken vacant property system. Members of the Land Bank Alliance, which includes a number of both non-profit and for-profit organizations, are strongly behind passage of an effective land bank ordinance that is transparent, accountable, predictable, efficient, equitable, and has strong community involvement, with appropriate amendments, which we have proposed to Councilmembers.
We believe that it's essential to pass this bill before Council's winter recess. So we hope to move forward -- to be able to move forward with addressing this urgent challenge and ensure that the land bank is adequately funded as part of the City's FY15 budget.
This is an opportunity for the City Council and the Administration to create a smart, effective land bank and Council approval process for the disposition of properties, and we look forward to working with you to amend Bill No. 130156 and make sure that's finalized by your next session on December 5th so that we can get final approval on December 12th.