Modified: January 14, 2016 11:56am
February 23 Event Targets Problem Property Owners who Manipulate Foreclosure Process
ERIE COUNTY, NY— The Erie County Department of Real Property Tax Services has announced a mid-year property auction and foreclosure sale targeting problem properties owned by individuals who have systematically and annually manipulated the foreclosure and auction process to retain ownership. These properties, scattered across Erie County, have remained in the auction pipeline for months and even years while owners have taken unfair advantage of mechanisms in bankruptcy law meant to protect honest homeowners, but which allow unscrupulous property owners to remain in possession of properties they neither pay taxes on nor maintain. The auction will begin at 9:00 AM on February 23, 2016 in the auditorium of the downtown Buffalo and Erie County Public Library.
“Foreclosure on a property is always a last resort, and we will always work with property owners well prior to this point to help them get current with their property taxes. The properties to be auctioned are owned by people who don’t pay taxes, don’t keep up the property, and don’t care what the neighborhood looks like. The bankruptcy process is designed to offer safeguards to individuals who fall on hard times, but these owners manipulate the process in such a way that they are able to avoid regularly-timed foreclosure events despite the fact that they are chronic deadbeats,” said Director of Erie County Real Property Tax Services Joseph Maciejewski. “Holding a mid-year auction ensures that these bad actors will not illicitly obtain the same protections extended to honest homeowners, and that the properties they’ve long held despite their tax scofflaw status will finally be returned to the tax rolls. As a result, properties that had long been eyesores or aggravations will once again become productive parts of neighborhoods and communities.”
Foreclosed properties removed from the county’s September 2015 sale will also be included in the auction. Properties given court ordered reprieve, defaults on payment plans and bankruptcies that have been discharged are eligible for this sale. A limited number of parcels that were adjourned from prior auctions will be added to this auction. The full list of properties now scheduled can be viewed here.
For more information:
On the Erie County Department of Real Property Tax services, visit http://www2.erie.gov/ecrpts/