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By BETH ZUMWALT
The City of Pittsfield announced Tuesday, Sept. 19 they have received a $41,000 grant to aid in the fix or flatten program. The announcement was made at the regular council meeting.
According to Gary Mendenhall, mayor, the money will enable the city to demolish two properties that have been on the city’s fix or flatten list for some time.
“We get to use tonnage that the county allows us, to dispose of properties that have fallen into disrepair,” Mendenhall said. “But there is still an expense to the process. Once the property is demolished and cleaned up, we hope to be able to sell it for the expenses we incurred during the fix or flatten process. In addition to man hours, there are legal fees, etc.”
Mendenhall said many times the owners live out of state or at least far enough away, they are not interested in the property, they may have inherited or acquired without actually wanting the property. Structures fail, the yards become overgrown with brush and weeds and soon the property is a nuisance and/or a hazard.
The city hopes to come up with a plan that potential buyers of such properties would submit their vision of the property to the city, along with their bid.
“And we might not sell it to the highest bidder,” Mendenhall said. “We will sell it to the person who offers the best plan for the city for the property. And that work must be completed within the year.
The council also talked about a potential grant from the Safe-Route-To-Schools program that would put sidewalks along Lowry Park on Lowry Street all the way to South School and also along East Morrison Street to the high school. No word on when the grant might be awarded.
The council also gave second on final reading to park mobile homes, as allowed by a special need permit. This act allows mobile homes to be parked in areas not designated for mobile homes no a temporary basis.
The ordinances addressing the food trucks, mobile vet clinics and mobile liquor sales were all tabled and sent back to committee