More cooperation sought between city sheriff, land bank

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A Philadelphia City Council measure is calling for more communication between city agencies when it comes to property acquisition. 

The aim is to prevent properties destined for affordable housing from being put up for sale to other than city agencies, said Council President Darrell Clarke.

“We’ve had some challenges with respect to revenue where properties that were being assembled for purpose of development ended up on the tax lien sale and the sheriff’s sale list without notification to the land bank,” Clarke said.

The goal is to make sure the sheriff and the land bank communicate effectively, and Sheriff Jewell Williams said new computer systems are helping.

“What we are trying to do is make the sheriff’s office more transparent and make sure that the process that has been going on in the past is more toward the 21st century,” he said.

That means doing away with handwritten records in favor of systems that talk to the city’s computers.

 

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