Nassau County Legislator Richard Nicolello voted this week to approve legislation authorizing the creation of a Nassau County Land Bank. The Land bank is a non-profit corporation that will buy, restore and market abandoned properties – a.k.a “Zombie Homes”. As of May 2015, there were 1,956 zombie homes in Nassau County. The legislation was approved unanimously by the Nassau County Legislature.
Once approved by the New York State Empire Development Corporation, state law permits nonprofit corporations to buy and maintain vacant, blighted, and usually unsightly properties and return them to useful life.“Abandoned homes are becoming increasingly widespread throughout Nassau County. These zombie homes reduce the value of the surrounding properties and are a blemish on our communities,” said Legislator Nicolello. “The Land Bank Legislation will work with banks to move the properties through the foreclosure process quickly and provide young Nassau families an opportunity to purchase the homes and improve our community”.Creation of the Nassau Land Bank gives Nassau access to grant money from the NY State Attorney General's office to purchase properties abandoned by owners during a foreclosure process. Managed by a seven-member board, the Nassau Land Bank will eventually become self-sustaining by creating a cycle of using money from the sale of renovated homes to purchase more abandoned properties.