I attended the Feb. 1 meeting of the Pleasureville City Council regarding the second reading of the proposed property maintenance ordinance.
The tactic of scaring the elderly was used by stating the ordinance would not be fair to the elderly who cannot afford repairs. This ordinance should help protect the elderly by eliminating run down properties, which historically seem to draw illegal activities. Two city council members were against the ordinance, with no definitive reason for doing so, other than “placing liens on property is not fair.” They obviously did not listen to or read the ordinance, which states the property owner will have the opportunity to remedy the problem, such as mowing the grass or finishing siding repair, before any action is taken.
Why would anyone start a siding project and not finish it? Why let weeds, garbage and junk pile up on your property? The property owner will never have a lien placed on the property unless the violation is ignored and no action taken. If the city has to clean up a property that is deemed unsafe or unhealthy, or has junk vehicles which need to be removed, the property owner simply has to correct the problem, thus ending the matter.
These two council members need to drive around the community and look at the number of disabled vehicles sitting in yards. These are inoperative vehicles that have been sitting a long time, wrecked, rusting, hoods up, tires gone. One property has car parts on the roof. They have no value other than to be eyesores, yet they remain sitting in plain view. Are these council members proud of the way the community presents itself to the outside world? Do these council members realize that while these properties continue in decline that the value of the properties that are maintained decline with them? Are they not elected to serve all of the people in the community? Can they not see, if this trend continues the revenue from tax dollars will continue to decline, until they, the same council members will have to sit and vote for a higher tax rate? The elderly would suffer from higher taxes, the very same people you are alleging to protect by not voting for this ordinance.
I, for one would like to know how they would feel if they had to live next door to run down, dilapidated, garbage and junk infested property. Would they complain or just sit back and say, hey, it’s not fair to them that they should have to clean up, mow the yard, or maybe they work all day and are just too tired. If that’s the case, what are they saying about those of us who hold full time jobs and then come home and maintain our property? Are they saying we are idiots?
The fact is simple, unless something is done to stop the decline, the city of Pleasureville will go the way of a lot of small communities. Why would anyone want to see this happen, especially elected officials?
Mayor Young, Commissioner Gary Grigsby, Commissioner R.L. Wilson and City Attorney Bill Brammell are to be commended for their patience, and fortitude at the last meeting. There were instances where many were trying to be heard at the same time, a few insults were hurled and inappropriate behavior on the part of a council member, in asking that a citizen be told to “shut up.” These are open, public meetings, where what is discussed is public record and any citizen has the right to voice an opinion.