Business View Civil and Municipal | March 2021

136 CIVIL AND MUNICIPAL MARCH 2021 acquire problem properties and convert them into assets. They have special powers that enable them to undertake these activities more effectively and efficiently than other public or nonprofit entities. The partnership between Freeport and the Northern Illinois Land Banks is a relatively new one, but two properties have already been sold through the Land Bank. The hope is that this will build momentum and aid in the city’s revitalization efforts over the next few years. It’s part of an overall plan to keep Freeport prosperous well into the future. “We’re looking at trying to keep our tax base strong with our current manufacturers and retailers,” Bukas says. “And we’re looking to make Freeport a destination for people to come visit. We’ve got lots of great things to do here. And our goal is to just continue to make a strong, strong community. A place where people want to come visit, work, and live.” PREFERRED VENDOR/PARTNER n Fehr Graham Engineering & Environmental