Rantoul trustees to look at information on blighted properties

Rantoul trustees to look at information on blighted properties

RANTOUL — Village trustees will review material showing various methods Illinois communities use to handle abandoned, deteriorated and vacant properties.

At this week's board study session, Trustee Hank Gamel presented material he brought from a recent Illinois Municipal League conference and asked the board to study it.

He said the board needs to continue to address the issues as a means of reversing the decline in property value in the community. He said he believes that declining value is largely due to a large amount of property available — citing the laws of supply and demand.

"We have a surplus of property," the trustee said. "Forty-nine percent of our residences are non-owner-occupied."

The village has taken an aggressive approach to eliminate unsightly property, primarily buying it at a reduced cost and razing the buildings. Village officials have said that is cheaper and quicker than waiting for condemnation proceedings and taking the issue to court.

Gamel said perhaps there are also other ways the village could deal with the issue.

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