'Green Thumbs' Run Into Some Red Tape

June 7, 2011 Updated Jun 7, 2011 at 6:59 PM EDT

By Kyla Igoe

June 7, 2011 Updated Jun 7, 2011 at 6:59 PM EDT

Buffalo, NY (WKBW)- Since 1992, Grassroots Gardens of Buffalo have helped people create and sustain community gardens on vacant land in the City of Buffalo. Currently, the non-profit leases about 60 vacant properties from the city, helps block clubs with gardening materials, and provides a million dollar insurance. Members say about 37 properties are still awaiting approval from city hall and they've been waiting years for a response on certain parcels.

"We're not asking the city to do (the gardens) for us," said Grassroots Gardens of Buffalo Executive Director Susannah Barton. "It's frustrating. The most frustrating thing is on the community gardeners end, since we have to tell them we can't help them."

Tuesday the group spoke with common council members to see if anything could be done to help the process along for the delayed lots. During the meeting, the city says it carefully reviews applications and it looks into many factors before approval. The city also added, most or all of the parcels in question will be handed off to the council for final approval in the near future. No exact date was given.