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Thread: Owning real estate as a planner

  1. #1
    Cyburbian stroskey's avatar
    Dec 2008
    the delta

    Owning real estate as a planner

    I did a Cyburbia search on "ethics" but didn't find this exact topic. I'm wondering what are the ethics of owning real estate in the community where you work as a planner. I looked on http://www.planning.org/ethics/ethicscode.htm but it didn't address the situation in specific terms. I'm referring more to buying a historic building as part of a local development group to rehab it rather than buying speculative vacant land. If a local group asked you to join their group for this purpose would you? (assuming you had the money).
    I burned down the church to atone for my transgressions.

  2. #2
    Corn Burning Fool giff57's avatar
    Jul 1998
    On the Mother River
    This subject comes up with City Managers all of the time. Generally we say that we should avoid investment property in the city we manage. This is to avoid the perception of any wrong doing or favoritism. Many times it is not about the facts, it is about the perception. I would steer clear if I was you.
    “As soon as public service ceases to be the chief business of the citizens, and they would rather serve with their money than with their persons, the State is not far from its fall”
    Jean-Jacques Rousseau

  3. #3
    Cyburbian mike gurnee's avatar
    Feb 1998
    Greensburg, Kansas
    I am with giff on this one. Rehab of an historic site will involve incentives and grants that you may have to review. You may have review of competing projects.

    If a planner has investment property, it better be the best maintained site in town. It may not be a problem unless there is someone in town likes to bitch.

  4. #4
    Cyburbian DetroitPlanner's avatar
    Mar 2004
    Where the weak are killed and eaten.
    This is why I let my house become the eyesore of the neighborhood!

  5. #5
    Cyburbian ColoGI's avatar
    Jul 2009
    Colo Front Range
    Quote Originally posted by mike gurnee View post
    I am with giff on this one. Rehab of an historic site will involve incentives and grants that you may have to review. You may have review of competing projects.
    Mee three. You are asking for trouble, even if you are totally, utterly, absolutely and completely clean, above-board, Ts dotted and Is crossed, etc. One person with a h---on for something you did to them (or perceived you did to them) or even someone who hates planners/planning, and the talk will flow and that will be it for the credibility and impartiality. Easy one.

  6. #6
    Apr 2008
    Near Saturn
    The previous posts assume you are employed by the local government that would make decisions or award grants. If that is the case, I agree with them.

    Otherwise, if you work as a consultant or a different government agency in the community I don't necessarily see a problem so long as you behave ethically.

    I don't recall from your previous posts which case applies to you.

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