ICON nuisance property ordinance

Posted on 06/20/11 No Comments

Today was a big day for ICON, with a front page article in the SJR highlighting our efforts to move forward with an ordinance that will increase fines for boarded properties, establish time limits for how long a property can remain boarded, and crack down on code violations that are not corrected within a specified period of time after being brought to the owner’s attention. We feel these issues are at the heart of many of the “problem properties” that disproportionally impact the older neighborhoods.

Alderman Cory Jobe is moving forward with introducing this first ordinance, and we are simultaneously working with several of the other aldermen on related ordinances that we believe are also important pieces of the puzzle. Of course, it will be important to have a resounding victory for our first ordinance, which should also make it easier to bring related topics before the city council.

For a preview of what may be discussed, see the Proposed changes at a glance on Alderman Jobe’s website…

What can you do to help?

  1. Right now, we believe this ordinance will be on first reading for Tuesday, July 5th. We will definitely want to have a good crowd at the council meeting as a show of support, so mark your calendar and we’ll confirm the date when it gets closer.
  2. Now would be a great time to send a letter to the editor regarding a specific property in your neighborhood that has been an ongoing problem. For example, since there are currently no limits on how long a property can remain boarded, perhaps there is a house near you that has been boarded for years, or one that had ongoing code violations that the owner has never corrected. Please take a few minutes to submit a letter to the editor about your specific area, and let’s demonstrate that this is a city wide problem.
  3. Call or email your alderman. While certain aldermen have been solidly behind us from the beginning, there are others who may be on the fence. We particularly want to reach out to Steve Dove, Frank Lesko, and Tim Griffin. We believe we have the votes to get this passed, but again, a resounding victory would send a strong message.

This is the whole reason that ICON was created, so it’s exciting to see our efforts start to come to fruition!

Michelle Higginbotham / Steve Combs