Columbus City Council approves $1M budget to demolish neglected, abandoned homes

Columbus City Council approves $1M budget to demolish neglected, abandoned homes

COLUMBUS, Ga. (WTVM) -The fight against run down and abandoned homes in Columbus is moving forward.

The Codes and Inspections Department of the city government posted a notice to property owners regarding demolition to 152 buildings across the Fountain City. Columbus City Council approved a $1 million budget for the fiscal year 2020, but the steps for demolition are now underway.

“The longer a house is not maintained, the more dangerous it becomes,” said one Columbus resident who lives near a house on the demolition list. You have to worry about your kids’ health, your neighbor’s health and the neighborhood in general,” said a Columbus resident who wished to remain unnamed.

In a notice from the Codes and Inspections Department, they’ve laid out the phases for how they’re planning to move forward in the coming weeks. The first phase is trailer parks, or manufacturing homes. The next phase will be abandoned houses.

Neighbors in the affected communities said they’re glad something is being done to clean up the city.

“It’s a lot of houses that have built up grass and are boarded up. It’s an eye sore for the neighborhood. It invites wrong activities and creatures from the woods,” said longtime resident Suzette Ragland.

According to Codes and Inspections, letters will go out to 50 property owners to notify them that their demolition cases will be brought before council. Those hearings will happen in August where council will then make a vote. If approved, they will move forward with demolition.

Codes and Inspections said if anyone knows of a property that needs to be added to the list, they can contact their office at (706) 653-4126.

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