J.D. CharlesFor The Logan Banner
November 15, 2012
LOGAN — Letters will be going out this week to the owners of 10 out of 41 identified owners of dilapidated properties in the city of Logan this week. It is time to fix up your problem or face a lien filed against it in court.
That was the message behind 41 brown and manila envelopes at City Hall last night where the Logan City Council met to discuss several issues.
City Building Code Enforcement Officer Ray Perry discussed the warning notices and other projects at the beginning of the November meeting.
Perry began by discussing the FEMA/Wilson Camp project, explaining that in order to move people out of that devastated area the city will have to buy property then be reimbursed by FEMA.
“We had been working on one parcel, then the owner died, now we have to find a new heir,” Perry said, adding that deeds are being prepared and that only properties that have a structure on them will be part of the buyout. Due to landslides on the road it is no longer wide enough to get a U-Haul into the area, Perry added, saying one yard has broken away behind a house.
Mayor Nolletti said two slides will be repaired on Lorraine Street and Upper High Street possibly this December, but that the other two slides will have to wait for spring to be repaired.
Perry said after the properties are bought there may be funds left over to address other problems, such as dilapidated buildings that need to be removed.
“We have 41 dilapidated properties, including some which are inhabited which should not be,” Perry said of the envelopes with details laid out on a nearby table. “We will be sending en letters out in the mail tomorrow. It will be the ones we can get to the easiest, first.”
Perry said he hoped that at least half the homeowners of the structures would step up and do the right thing and fix the problems themselves so the city is not forced to spend tax dollars tearing them down, and filing liens against the property owners to get reimbursement.
Mayor Serafino Nolletti said that demolition expert Mike Urioste, who worked with the city on removing the Number Two Parking Building has been contacted about putting in a bid to remove dilapidated housing and had done so. The Mayor said that there is no guarantee that Urioste would get the winning bid, but whichever demolition company did, they could expect help from the city in regards to hauling away the rubble.
Nolletti said the Central City Walk Bridge project would be moving forward as well. A legal ad ran recently in the Logan Banner seeking engineering services for the project. The deadline is this Friday, Nov. 23. Nolletti said that by the December Council Meeting he hopes to have a winning bid announced. Reps from one engineering firm were expected to be in Logan on Wednesday to look over the project.
Logan Fire Chief Scotty Beckett said “‘tis the season” to think about fire safety.
Chief Beckett noted that during cold fall and winter months his department and others across the Mountain State see a dramatic increase in home and structure fires due to unsafe practices with space heaters.
“We say this every year, but it pays to check your wires, check your heaters, check your candles and be wary about cooking fires and other possible sources of structure fires,” Beckett said, noting that recently his department had met with hundreds of school children and provided them with fire safety and awareness materials. “We try to work with our schools on fire prevention,” he added. The Logan Fire Department will have handled about 950 calls by the end of the year.
“In the last 14 days we have ran on four or five structure fires,” Beckett said. “Please pay extra caution this time of the year to fire hazards in your home.”