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  • Last modified 16 days ago (April 12, 2017)

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Eyesore must be fixed or flattened

Staff writer

The city will have one less dilapidated house after city council members gave the property owner 90 days to repair the structure or have it condemned.

Property owner Deliliah Belshe told council members Monday she plans to repair the property at 714 Sherman St.

“There haven’t been any changes since our previous discussion in February,” public works director Marty Fredrickson told the council. “It has been painted, but that would be the only change.”

Fredrickson said he’s concerned about the safety of the house’s interior.

“They haven’t gotten to the inside,” Fredrickson said.

Belshe said the kitchen and bathroom are the worst areas of the house.

“They haven’t gotten to the inside yet,” Belshe said.

The house was painted Sunday, Fredrickson said.

A pile of siding litters the ground at the northwest corner. Rotting soffit, siding and windowsills are visible from the street. Spray paint covers not just the siding but the entry door hardware and significant portions of its windows. Some windows stand open.

The county appraiser’s office lists the property value as $10,000.

Mayor Todd Heitschmidt asked Belshe if she plans to rehabilitate the house, and she nodded.

Fredrickson recommended giving her 90 days to work on it.

Fredrickson gave Belshe an inspection checklist. The house must have no roof leaks; secure and intact windows and doors; secure and supportive flooring; plumbing and sewer lines must work properly; faucets must work for both hot and cold water; wiring must be properly installed and in working order; the heating system must work and be properly vented; and smoke alarms must work in each bedroom.

After Belshe left the meeting, Heitschmidt said owners of property in condition as bad as the one being discussed usually do not have the funds to make the repairs.

Commissioner Chris Costello speculated Belshe might be willing to deed the property over to the city.

“I hate to take people’s property, but I still like to have neighborhoods that people are proud to live in,” Costello said.

County appraiser records list 202 Miller as a house also owned by Belshe. That property was the scene of a dog bite reported by the postmaster on March 22, assistant police chief Clinton Jeffries said.

A welded wire fence surrounds the back yard with “no trespassing” and “beware of the dog” signs affixed to it. While the house and garage show varying levels of decay, the property is not the subject of any action by the city.

Last modified April 12, 2017

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