Land Bank foreclosing on 5 properties

By Kyle Shaner -

SIDNEY – The Shelby County Land Reutilization Corp. recently acquired a property and is in the process of foreclosing on five additional properties, Shelby County Land Bank Director Doug Ahlers said during Tuesday’s monthly meeting.

The Shelby County Land Bank recently acquired the property at 227-231 S. Miami Ave. in Sidney, and it is slated for demolition.

Ahlers said he’s working with the county prosecutor to foreclose on five properties: 716 E. Court St. in Sidney, 429 E. Main St. in Port Jefferson, 751 State Route 589 in Maplewood, a Timothy Bell property on North Main Street in Jackson Center and 406 N. Miami Ave. in Sidney.

The property in Jackson Center is located next to the village’s utility area. The village will take on the property and will reimburse the Land Bank for legal fees, Ahlers said.

A neighbor is interested in the property at 406 N. Miami Ave. in Sidney, Ahlers said, and also will pay the Land Bank for legal fees. The house already has been demolished from the site, and the City of Sidney has been maintaining the property.

Ahlers is working with the Ohio History Connection in deed preparation for a property in Lockington that the Land Bank owns.

“Ohio History Connection wants to talk to their attorney, but I think all we’ve got to do is prepare a deed and sign it off to them,” Ahlers said.

Overall, the Shelby County Land Bank has acquired 80 properties. It has demolished 69 of them and sold 10. It’s been reimbursed $1,036,924.41 by the Neighborhood Initiative Project.

Ahlers has been working with the Ohio Land Bank Association to look for additional funding for 2020 and beyond.

“There’s some traction there,” Ahlers said. “One of the ladies that came on board with the new governor was integral with Moving Ohio Forward. She’d like to see something like that.”

There also is some progress with House Bill 252 for possible funding of industrial demolition. Shelby County officials are looking for funding to possibly demolish the former Wagner foundry in Sidney.

“Current legislation is out there,” Ahlers said. “I’m not sure where it’s going, but the way it’s written today would require a 50 percent local match.”

Also during Tuesday’s meeting, Shelby County’s Land Bank voted to pay $500 for an annual membership to the Ohio Land Bank Association.

The Land Bank’s next meeting is scheduled for 1:30 p.m. Jan. 7 in the County Annex.

By Kyle Shaner

Reach this writer at or 937-538-4824.

Reach this writer at or 937-538-4824.