House passes legislation for Springfield land bank

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The Missouri House of Representatives late last week forwarded legislation that would establish a land bank in the city of Springfield.

House Bill 563, sponsored by Rep. Bill Owen, R-Springfield, now heads to the Missouri Senate for approval after the April 8 passage in the House, according to a news release.

The bill would establish a land bank agency through which officials in Springfield would assemble, manage and dispose of vacant land for neighborhood stabilization or redevelopment purposes.

“This is part of an integral and innovative effort that the city of Springfield is undertaking to rehabilitate our heritage neighborhoods," Owen said in the release. "In short, the whole point is to give our community the power to renew and improve."

Owen, former senior vice president for the Bank of Bolivar, was elected to the House in the November election.