Suffredin- Changing County Government  
 

Accountability
Forest Preserves
Public Safety
Cook County Budget
Forest Pres. Budget
Property Tax Appeal
Health & Hospitals
Land Bank Authority
Policy Resolutions
Unsung Heroine

 

   
 
   
   
 
   
     
  Office phone numbers:  
   
 
 

Search current and proposed Cook County Legislation in Larry's exclusive legislative library.

   
 

The Cook County Code of Ordinances are the current laws of Cook County.

   
  Eighteen of the 20 largest banks in the world and more than 50 foreign banks have offices in Cook County.
   
     
     
     



County official sees value in ‘land bank’ of foreclosed properties

Tuesday, May 22, 2012
Chicago Sun-Times
by DAVID ROEDER

Land banks, agencies set up to acquire vacant and foreclosed homes and make them community assets once again, work in Michigan, Ohio and New York and the idea should get a tryout here, said Cook County Commissioner Bridget Gainer.


She’s spent a fair amount of time on land banks, examining their impact elsewhere, considering models for governance and explaining the concept to mayors, developers and nonprofit groups. Gainer, who represents Cook County’s 10th District covering the North Side lakefront and Northwest Side, said she’s picking up support and hopes to bring a land bank ordinance to the County Board in a couple of months. She cited encouragement from Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle and Mayor Rahm Emanuel.

Land banks, she said, can deal with properties the marketplace has rejected. “There is such a disconnect out there,” she said. “You see people walking away from their homes, but there’s a long transition period to a new owner because of the backlog of foreclosures.” She said that in Cook County, it takes more than 500 days from the filing of a foreclosure to the awarding of a title.

That “limbo period” can hurt communities, she said, as neglected properties multiply.

Gainer said land banks can clear away title problems and back taxes, making properties attractive to buyers. Some major mortgage lenders, she said, are “chomping at the bit” to donate homes to such an agency.

A land bank here wouldn’t levy taxes and would be independent of any single government. Gainer has been looking at alternatives for private and public cooperation, perhaps having the program run by an experienced nonprofit group.

She estimated it would need about $15 million in seed money over three years, which could come from grants and Illinois’ share of a financial settlement for mortgage fraud. At least the robo-signing banks would be paying to clean up their mess.

Gainer said most land banks elsewhere are self-sustaining on money from rentals and property sales. She cited particular success in Flint, Mich.’s Genesee County and Cleveland’s Cuyahoga County. More information is at BridgetGainer.com.

FRANKLIN FODDER: Last month, I wrote about the Crown family and their development partners, Tishman Speyer Properties, pushing plans for an office building at the large vacant site at 130 N. Franklin. Since then, I’ve learned a couple of things.

One is that I have a rendering of the project by Krueck and Sexton Architects, the firm that designed the Spertus Institute on Michigan Avenue. The sharply angled glass of the Franklin Street project looks a lot like the Spertus building, so perhaps the Crowns should ask for more originality for their money.

I earlier spoke with family patriarch Lester Crown, who emphasized that tenants for the project are probably a long way off. Crown also voiced no regret for tearing down the old Chicago Mercantile Exchange, which sat on part of the property. The razing incurred the wrath of preservationists. Crown said he had to tear it down fast before the city landmarked the building, which he said would have been a mistake. “It was an inefficient use for the site,” he said.

NO NO NATO: For all the promises about the NATO Summit being a long-term boon to Chicago business, it was a short-term drag on it, judging from information gleaned from hotels and restaurants. Standard Parking Corp., the largest operator of parking garages in and near downtown, also took a hit.

Executive Vice President Steven Warshauer said that for Friday through Monday, Standard’s garages saw a 35 percent to 70 percent decline in business from a typical period. For Standard’s hotel garages, business was off an average 39 percent because NATO delegations didn’t need to park cars and other customers avoided downtown, he said. But Warshauer said he hopes Chicago’s exposure from NATO will pay eventual dividends.

STICKING AROUND: As the former ShoreBank and under its current name, Urban Partnership Bank has long operated from 7054 S. Jeffery. But its continuation there became uncertain after ShoreBank’s failure led to the property being controlled by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp., which put it up for sale.

Urban Partnership has announced its purchase of the site, offering the deal as evidence that it will remain in South Shore to practice its model of community banking.

DOING THE DEALS: In a sure sign that business is jumping, Missner Group built a 50,000-square-foot trampoline center for Jump America at 880 Lakeside Dr., Gurnee.



Recent Headlines

Preteens out of detention before trial under new ordinance
Friday, September 14, 2018
Chicago Daily Law Bulletin

Cook County Board bars detention of youth under 13 years old
Thursday, September 13, 2018
Injustice Watch

Preteens accused of crimes won't be locked up at Cook County juvenile center
Thursday, September 13, 2018
Chicago Sun-Times

Slowik: Cook County offers residents last chance to comment on strategic plan
Thursday, September 13, 2018
Daily Southtown

Settlement over Cook County's 2007 decision to cut inmates' dental care will cost nearly $5.3 million
Wednesday, September 12, 2018
Chicago Tribune

Anti-patronage Shakman pact requiring federal oversight of Cook County hiring, firing to end
Friday, August 31, 2018
Chicago Tribune

1st District upholds merit board in firing of deputy
Thursday, August 30, 2018
Chicago Daily Law Bulletin

Neighborhood program helps Cook County residents buy homes
Sunday, August 26, 2018
Chicago Sun-Times

Judge upholds Cook County firearm, ammunition taxes
Thursday, August 23, 2018
Chicago Daily Law Bulletin

Editorial: E-filing should make Cook County courts more accessible. It doesn't
Wednesday, August 22, 2018
Chicago Tribune

Cook County tax incentive could pave way for Wingstop, Dunkin' Donuts on Elgin's Summit Street
Tuesday, August 21, 2018
Chicago Tribune

Editorial: What happened to the elk?
Friday, August 10, 2018
Chicago Tribune

Wells Fargo to offer $15,000 grants to potential Cook County homebuyers
Thursday, August 09, 2018
Chicago Tribune

Suit alleges Cook County detainees secretly monitored in bathrooms in holding cells at courthouses
Wednesday, August 08, 2018
Chicago Tribune

Half the elk at Busse Woods died last year, and officials aren’t sure why
Tuesday, August 07, 2018
Chicago Tribune

A letter from Dr. Jay Shannon regarding gun violence and Stroger Hospital
Tuesday, August 07, 2018
Special to suffredin.org

As Evanston adapts to minimum wage hike, nearby towns say they have no plan to join in
Tuesday, August 07, 2018
Chicago Tribune

Lawsuit could blast a $250 million hole in county budget
Monday, August 06, 2018
Crain's Chicago Business

Pappas: Automatic refunds of $19.5 million going to 53,000 homeowners because of property tax cuts
Monday, August 06, 2018
Special to suffredin.org

Thousands of Cook County homeowners to receive property tax refunds
Monday, August 06, 2018
Chicago Sun-Times

all news items

Paid for by Larry Suffredin and not at taxpayer expense. A Haymarket Production.
^ TOP