Vacant Property Owner's Guide to “BLIGHT BILL”
What It Would Do
Raise annual fines for owning a vacant property.
How It Would Work
Annual fine for having a vacant property would be increased according to the following schedule:
(i.) No fee for properties that are vacant for less than one year;
(ii.) $500.00 for properties that are vacant for at least one year but less than two years;
(iii.) $1,000.00 for properties that are vacant for at least two years but less than three years;
(iv.) $5,000.00 for properties that are vacant for at least three years but less than four years;
(v.) $10,000.00 for properties that are vacant for at least four years but less than five years;
(vi.) $12,000.00 for properties that are vacant for at least five years, but less than six years;
(vii.) $14,000.00 for properties that are vacant for at least six years, but less than seven years;
(viii.) $16,000.00 for properties that are vacant for at least seven years, but less than eight years;
(ix.) $18,000.00 for properties that are vacant for at least eight years, and an additional $2,000.00 for each year in excess of eight years.
More New in Proposed Law
• Individuals/LLC’s could get up to a 2 year waiver of fees and non-profits could get up to a 5 year waiver of fees if they demonstrate that they are in the process of demolishing or rehabilitating the building.
• Owners of vacant properties that are occupancy ready could get a 2 year waiver of fees if the property is actively for sale or for lease.
• The City could (but is not required) to forgive vacant property fees if the owner and the city establish an agreement for rehab and the owner completes the rehab in 6 months.
• Properties owned by the state, city, any of their respective agencies or political subdivisions,, and the Wilmington Neighborhood Conservancy Land Bank are exempt from registration requirements.
• Fine for failure to register a vacant building: $500
• Fine for not paying vacant property fees: $250 a week
Download the revised Ordinance No. 19-026 (Agenda Item #4654) here.
A Better Alternative
Instead of proposed "Blight Bill" Ordinance 19-026, Wilmington needs a balanced set of policies to improve housing and stabilize neighborhoods. Find more information on a better alternative here: Code Reform that Works
Call City Council at (302) 576-2140 and Ask Them to Vote NO on Ordinance 19-026 (Agenda Item #4654) and ask for the community to be involved in creating a balanced set of policies to improve housing and strengthen neighborhoods!