Archive for Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Edwardsville begins condemnation process on dilapidated, vacant home

February 1, 2012

The city of Edwardsville is taking action to condemn an unsafe building for the first time in several years.

At its Jan. 23 meeting, the Edwardsville City Council adopted a resolution setting a hearing at 7 p.m. March 12 for the dangerous and unfit structure at 204. S. 4th St. After the meeting, Mike Webb, city administrator, said this is the first of many dangerous structures the city was taking a closer look at.

“This house has been vacant for quite some time and has obviously has fallen into a high level of disrepair and has been an ongoing eyesore,” Webb said.

The home has a hole in the roof, broken windows, missing siding, and floors that have collapsed into the basement, Webb said.

“For all intents and purposes, it certainly not inhabitable by people,” he said.

A bank owns the building, though it is not clear which bank. Webb said an ownership and encumberance report shows the title belongs to an entity called Ever Bank in Florida, but Bank of America also has stated to city that it owns property.

Bank of America has told the city it would demolish the building, but to ensure process moves forward, the city initiated the condemnation process, Webb said. The hearing in March is just for property owners, in which the city can order it to be repaired or removed, and if the owner fails to meet the city’s requirements, the city can raze the building and file a lien on property.

Webb said residents and council members have expressed concerns in the past, but no one officially filed a complaint. The city initiated the condemnation process in this case, but it also can be intiated with five filed complaints.

Webb said the city hasn't condemned a building since he has been with the city, as the process can be expensive for the city, but the city has decided to take a closer look at buildings that may be unsafe.

“I anticipate there will be others that we will pursue in the future,” Webb said.

The motion to set the hearing was approved 3-0. Council members Mark Bishop and John Eickhoff did not attend the meeting.

In other business, the council:

• Approve an amusement device license renewal for Mac’s Place, 580 S. 4th St.

• Approved payment of bills totaling $223,244.

• Approved the minutes of the Jan. 9 meeting.

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