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Two W.O. Properties Proposed for Land Bank Acquisition

By Cami DiBattista
The Tube City Almanac
September 21, 2017
Posted in: McKeesport and Region News, White Oak News

White Oak officials have identified two properties in the borough for possible acquisition by the Tri-COG Land Bank.

At this week's council meeting, Councilman Dave Pasternak discussed the borough’s participation in the land bank, which allows Allegheny County communities more control over the pace of revitalization within their borders.

Operated by the Steel Rivers and Turtle Creek Valley councils of government, the land bank enables municipalities to acquire tax-delinquent properties, eliminate the back property taxes, and then re-sell the properties to new owners.

“The main purpose of the land bank is to take properties in disrepair that can be (put) back on the tax rolls,” Pasternak said. “The land bank will get a percentage of taxes for the first five years, then after that the school district and municipality receive 100 percent of the taxes.”

The two properties in White Oak proposed for acquisition by the land bank are both vacant lots, Pasternak said. The next selection of properties by the land bank is due Sept. 30, he said.

In other business, resident George Matta questioned the council regarding the White Oak Community Center. He asked how much the facility cost taxpayers and why is it not yet open to the public.

Council President Ron Massung reported that the center was not open due to "litigation" but the council hopes to receive an occupancy permit for the facility within a month.

Mayor Ina Marton reported police activity for the month of August. White Oak police issued 74 traffic violations and made 20 arrests (19 adults, one juvenile) including one DUI arrest, three disorderly conduct citations, seven arrests for drug offenses, one arrest for receiving stolen property and two for theft.

Councilman Edward Babyak announced that White Oak Volunteer Fire Company No. 1 recently purchased a new aerial truck.

Originally published September 21, 2017.

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