Moray Council could resort to the compulsory purchase of vacant or derelict buildings which have an adverse impact on their surroundings.
Members of the council’s planning and regulatory services committee were told today that 18 properties and areas of land had been identified as having an impact on the amenity of their neighbourhoods.
These included dwellings, factory premises and industrial and commercial properties across Moray.
The committee heard that vacant and derelict properties and land could impact significantly on the amenity of an area and inhibit economic growth.
The issue was first highlighted in a report to the committee last year when an approach was set out to help bring land and buildings back into use and reduce their adverse impact.
Today’s meeting was given an update on progress in contacting the owners of the 18 properties already identified.
A report to the committee said: “In cases where owners cannot be traced or are deceased with no clear beneficiary, it may be necessary for the council to proceed with a compulsory purchase order to resolve the situation.
“Where it is not possible to identify an owner there are special procedures to follow and each case will be different.
“For any property where a CPO is promoted, the process is quite complex and costly but in some cases it may be the only way to achieve a positive outcome.”
Councillors will be given periodic updates on progress in relation to the properties which have already been identified.
Moray Council area stretches from Tomintoul in the south to the shores of the Moray Firth, from Keith in the east to Forres in the west. The council and its 4,500 employees respond to the needs of 95,510 residents in this beautiful part of Scotland, which nestles between Aberdeenshire and the Highlands.
Famous for its colony of dolphins, fabulous beaches and more malt whisky distilleries than any where else in Scotland, Moray is a thriving area and a great place to live.
Headquartered in Elgin, the administrative capital of Moray.