Governor Appoints Semone James Executive Director of State Land Bank Fast Track Authority

Contact: Heidi Hansen 517-335-6397

February 1, 2005

LANSING – Governor Jennifer M. Granholm today announced the appointment of Semone M. James as executive director of the State Land Bank Fast Track Authority. 

“The Land Bank Fast Track Authority is critical to revitalizing our communities and business districts,” said Granholm.  “Semone will provide the leadership and focus required to market and sell the thousands of properties that are sitting vacant in communities across the state.”

James, of Lansing, is currently a treasury investment specialist/senior portfolio manager at the Michigan Department of Treasury.  Prior to working with the Department of Treasury, she worked as a senior property analyst with the Michigan Department of Transportation Bureau of Highways, Real Estate Division, and Project Delivery Section.  A graduate of Eastern Michigan University, James received her bachelor of business administration, majoring in finance and real estate, in 1991. 

The Land Bank Fast Track Authority was established under the recommendations of the Governor’s Land Use Leadership Council.  The Authority allows properties that have reverted to state ownership due to failure to pay taxes to move through an expedited title clearing process.  Thanks to the Fast Track Authority, these tax reverted properties can be ready for sale and redevelopment in less than one year, reducing blight, eyesores, and unproductive and obsolete spaces in neighborhoods across the state.  Prior to the Authority, properties could sit vacant and off the tax roles for up to seven years before they were able to be redeveloped. 

As executive director, James will be responsible for developing a marketing strategy for the properties once they have cleared title and overseeing the actions of the State Land Bank Fast Track Authority.  She will also provide the State Land Bank Fast Track Authority Board of Directors with a regular report of activities and financial condition of the Authority.

James is appointed to serve as executive director at the pleasure of the Governor.  This appointment is not subject to the advice and consent of the Senate.