For Immediate Release: Contact: Joe McQueen
October 15, 2014 (518) 388-4772
Schenectady/Amsterdam Win Land Bank Funding
$3 Million Grant for Capital Region Land Bank from Attorney General Schneiderman Will Boost Neighborhoods
(Schenectady, NY) Schenectady Mayor Gary McCarthy, Capital Region Land Bank Chairman Robert Hoffman and Amsterdam Mayor Ann Thane today celebrated news from State Attorney General Eric Schneiderman that the Capital Region Land Bank has received a $3 million grant to help promote neighborhood revitalization efforts.
Chairman Robert Hoffman, a member of the Schenectady County Legislature, said “This is a very exciting time for land banks and a great day for everyone concerned with revitalizing our neighborhoods. Our unified County economic development team worked very closely with the City and Metroplex to submit this winning grant proposal. This funding, provided by Attorney General Schneiderman, will help our Land Bank invest in critical projects to improve challenged neighborhoods in Schenectady County.”
Schenectady Mayor Gary McCarthy said, “We thank Attorney General Schneiderman for providing this critical funding to our neighborhood rehab and stabilization efforts. This new funding will be combined with $3 million in HUD funds and other local resources to create a multi-million dollar boost for Schenectady neighborhoods.”
City Council Member Ed Kosiur said, “This is fantastic news and we thank Attorney General Schneiderman. With this funding and with HUD 108 funding secured by the City, Metroplex and our City IDA, we have the tools in place to fight blight and start rebuilding our City neighborhoods.”
Amsterdam Mayor Ann Thane said, “We thank the Attorney General and the team at the Land Bank for working with Amsterdam in this regional effort to improve our two communities.”
Steven Strichman, Executive Director of the Capital Region Land Bank said, “Thanks to Attorney General Schneiderman’s funding, the Land Bank can now undertake revitalization efforts that will help our municipalities stabilize neighborhoods and create quality housing for our growing workforce.”
Land Bank Funding
The Land Bank is officially known as the Land Reutilization Corporation of the Capital Region. The organization is committed to strategic rehabilitation and demolition of vacant and abandoned properties within focus neighborhoods to help stabilize and create strong blocks. In 2011, New York State passed the Land Bank Act to provide municipalities with a new tool to combat blight caused by abandoned and neglected homes and lots. The Capital Region Land Bank, consisting of the City of Schenectady, Schenectady County and the City of Amsterdam, was designated as a State Land Bank in 2012.
Attorney General Eric Schneiderman’s office is providing $20 million to NYS Land Banks using proceeds from a national mortgage settlement case won by the Attorney General. The Land Reutilization Corporation of the Capital Region submitted an application for a share of these funds pursuant to an RFP issued by the Attorney General’s Office earlier this year. The Capital Region application included Schenectady, Schenectady County and Amsterdam.
Schenectady will use $2.5 million in grant funding to demolish homes that are beyond repair and rehab other properties that can add to neighborhood restoration efforts working in close cooperation with the Mayor’s HOMES program (Home Ownership Made Easy in Schenectady).
The City of Amsterdam will utilize $500,000 in grant funding to stop the spread of blight by rehabilitating strategic properties and neighborhoods.
Attorney General Schneiderman announced winners of Land Bank grants across New York State today. The winning Schenectady and Amsterdam proposal was put together by Capital Region Land Bank Executive Director Steve Strichman, Metroplex including Ray Gillen and David Hogenkamp and Nick Zabawsky from the City of Amsterdam.