Allegheny County, June 22, 2023 – Senator Wayne Fontana issued the following statement today, after the Pennsylvania House of Representatives passed his Senate Bill 202, which provides land banks in Allegheny County a streamlined process for acquiring abandoned and tax delinquent properties for blight mitigation:

“My Senate Bill 202 will help land banks in the City of Pittsburgh and surrounding communities fight the blight that continues to plague our neighborhoods through depressed property values, health hazards, and lower tax revenue,” Fontana said. “With this bill on its way to the Governor’s desk for his signature, Pittsburgh and Allegheny County will soon have another powerful tool to address blight.”

Under Senate Bill 202, Allegheny County’s land banks would get priority bid at sheriff’s sales of tax delinquent properties. The bill also provides for a shorter redemption period for homeowners to claim the property before it goes to sale – cut from the current nine months down to three months. This will expedite the whole process and help get more properties in and out of inventory much quicker and ready for rehabilitation.

Senate Bill 202 is a priority of the Bicameral Bipartisan Blight Task Force and enjoys support from the Pittsburgh Land Bank, the Urban Redevelopment Authority of Pittsburgh, the Pittsburgh Community Reinvestment Group, the Housing Alliance of Pennsylvania, the Greater Pittsburgh Chamber of Commerce, and the Tri-COG Land Bank. The bill has passed the Pennsylvania Senate unanimously the past two legislative sessions.