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Michigan Department of Human Services, Michigan Land Bank and MSHDA announce $15 Million in Blight Elimination Funding

Contact: Dave Akerly, Director of Marketing and Public Relations 517-373-7394

Lansing, Mich. Feb. 20, 2013- DHS Director Maura Corrigan is pleased to announce that 34 municipal, township and county entities statewide will share in $15 million in funding to help eliminate blight in their communities.

The awards range from approx. $3.7 million to the Genesee County Land Bank to $10,000 awarded to the Houghton County Land Bank. All geographic regions of the state have been represented in the final funding decision.

Funding for these awards comes from a March 2012 settlement reached by 49 state attorneys general, including Michigan Attorney General Bill Schuette, following a lawsuit over mortgage foreclosure practices. Among other things, the settlement resulted in payments to the states. Of Michigan's $97.2 million share, the legislature through state law allocated $25 million to the creation of a Blight Elimination Program to help communities demolish vacant and abandoned properties with the goal of promoting public safety, stabilizing property values and enhancing current and future development opportunities.

The Blight Elimination Program is a partnership between DHS, the Michigan Land Bank Fast Track Authority (MLB) and the Michigan State Housing Development Authority (MSHDA).

Legislation authorizing this initiative allocated $10 million for demolition in the City of Detroit and $15 million for demolition projects elsewhere in Michigan. The funding for Detroit is being used to eliminate blight around select schools involved in the initial phase of the Pathways to Potential program. DHS, the Michigan Land Bank and MSHDA have now chosen the project areas to fund with the remaining $15 million allocated to the outstate portion of this program. More than 90 separate requests for funds were received by the state during the recent application phase.  A web page with the application procedure and FAQ's can be found at www.michigan.gov/pathwaystopotential.

"The volume of requests received clearly shows Michigan communities are serious about getting rid of blight and are willing to aggressively pursue opportunities to eliminate it," said Corrigan, also a member of the MSHDA Board of Directors. "People want to live in safe and vibrant communities. Funding these individual projects across our state will help clear the way-literally-for the reinvention of Michigan." 

Applicants for these awards were asked to provide a detailed description of their proposed project(s), including a post-demolition land use plan. They were also asked to explain in detail the anticipated benefits aimed at public safety, property value stabilization and economic development. Descriptions of local support along with additional public and private investment in the project(s) were also requested.

"The Michigan State Housing Development Authority was proud to partner in the review process with DHS and the MLB," said MSHDA Executive Director Scott Woosley, also a member of the MLB Fast Track Authority Board of Directors. "This effort reflects our agencies collective understanding that moving Michigan forward requires bold action. Removing blight will help revitalize cities and neighborhoods around the state and open those areas to community and economic development activity."

"The demolition of blighted and abandoned properties has a tremendous impact on the lives of the families who live near them," MLB Executive Director Kim Homan said. "The Michigan Land Bank looks forward to working closely with our partners as we continue to revitalize our communities and strengthen local economies."

Listed below are the various municipal, county and township entities that have been awarded a portion of the outstate funding. Please contact the grantees for specific details of their individual blight elimination project(s).

Applicant

Award Amount

Genesee County Land Bank

$3,713,240

Ingham County Land Bank

$836,850

City of Plainwell                                                                        

$720,720

City of Bay City                                                                          

$269,325

Charter Twp. Of Ypsilanti                                                        

$653,840

ICCF-Wealthy                                                                  

$41,868

Saginaw County Land Bank                                                      

$1,784,685

Genesee County Planning Commission                                

$182,960

Grand Traverse County                                                             

$44,000

Marquette County Land Bank                                     

$486,385

LIFT Foundation                                                                          

$136,000

City of Manistee Housing Commission                                   

$90,500

Village of Newberry                                                                   

$180,000

Kalamazoo County Land Bank                                                  

$936,915

Northern Homes CDC                                                                 

$20,000

LINC

$682,500

Reed City                                                                                      

$370,000

Berrien-Cass-Van Buren Michigan Works!                             

$740,000

City of Mt. Pleasant                                                                    

$800,000

City of AuGres                                                                              

$112,000

City of East Tawas                                                                        

$23,000

City of Vassar                                                                                

$41,158

NCCS Center for Non-Profit Housing                                        

$70,000

Northeast Michigan Affordable Housing                                 

$36,750

City of Coldwater                                                                          

$97,000

City of Pontiac                                                                               

$996,668

Houghton County Land Bank                                                      

$10,000

Village of Ravenna                                                                        

$45,000

Brevort Township                                                                         

$50,000

City of Muskegon                                                                          

$111,500

City of Petoskey                                                                            

$21,000

City of Onaway                                                                              

$14,000

Village of Constantine                                                                  

$10,032.12

Leelanau County Land Bank                                                        

$58,500

Total Amount:

$14,386,396.12

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