[r20] Dermody's Bill to Fight Abandoned Properties Signed by Governor (3/5/2008)

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Start Date: 3/5/2008 All Day
End Date: 3/5/2008

A new law to take effect this summer will take aim at dilapidated and abandoned properties, thanks to House Enrolled Act 1145, co-authored by Rep. Tom Dermody (R-LaPorte) and Rep. Scott Pelath (D-Michigan City). The governor signed the bill on Monday, and the new law will become effective on July 1.

"I am pleased to see this common-sense measure enacted into law," said Rep. Dermody. "Putting abandoned properties in the care of concerned owners will strengthen our communities, remove eyesores and put land back on the property tax rolls."

The law allows a county to transfer to a neighboring landowner, for little to no cost, abandoned property for which the county holds a tax deed. The law requires that all neighboring landowners be notified before sale negotiations or transfer proceedings begin.

"Not only do these abandoned properties pose a safety risk and reduce property values, very often no one is paying property taxes on them, shifting the burden to other residents. The result of these transfers encouraged under the new law will result in a more equitable tax bill for all."