FULTON, NY – The Fulton Common Council ended the year with three additional sales of tax foreclosed properties as a result of their push to return properties to the tax roll.
At the final meeting of the year, the council sold three properties including one residential home on Hannibal Street that sold for $1,000, one residential home on Rochester Street that sold for $5,000, and a lot on Oneida Street that sold for $12,500.
“That may not seem like a lot, be we are lucky to get that out of it. What people don’t realize is, that saves us $25,000 -$30,000 in demolition costs that would be inevitable if they didn’t sell,” said First Ward councilor and council president, Tom Kenyon.
With these three final sales, the number of tax foreclosed properties sold in the past year by the council reached a total of 82.
“I have to say thank you to the council and mayor, I think we had a great year,” Kenyon said.
The council started the year with a push to sell as many tax foreclosed properties as possible.
The efforts began as each councilor received a list of the eligible properties in their ward. The councilmen then partnered together to visit each property on the list and determine whether they were ready to sell through real estate, submit for request for proposal or in need of demolition.
The stipulations of an RFP give the new owner one year to make the necessary changes to bring the property up to code based on the city’s regulations at which time failure to do so results in the city regaining the property.
With the number of property sales, the city has gained “$260,849 as it stands right now,” not including the most recent sales, said city clerk/chamberlain, Daniel O’Brien.
This figure is based on the gains the city made from sales, meaning after any taxes or money owed on each property was paid.
“It’s just been really productive that the council and mayor have been aggressive on turning these properties around,” O’Brien said.
He added that the gain in sales has been “absolutely significantly more” than the amount gained in prior years.
Specifically, he said, the city has seen a gain on average of at least $180,000 more than normal.
“Its a liability for the city to hang on to them but also in turn they are putting them back onto the tax rolls so it’s been a big positive for us,” he said.
While selling properties was a top priority for the council, a lot of work went into ensuring that the properties sold would not interfere with the caliber of each neighborhood.
“I think it’s great, the most important thing is that we have the most properties on the tax rolls as we can get. Having that in mind, we want to include the quality of neighborhood. We can’t just sell to anybody, so there’s a lot of involvement with the council in each step and I think the success speaks for itself,” said Fulton Mayor Ronald Woodward Sr.
The Fulton Common Council will hold its first regular meeting of 2017 on Tuesday, January 3 at 7 p.m. in the Common Council Chambers in the Fulton Municipal Building.