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Panel takes blight action on Monroe St. property

A Monroe Street property has been declared blighted.

Ultimately, the decision was made as the patience of the city’s Blighted Property Review Committee ran out.

The property at 211 Monroe St. first came before the committee in 2019 and a fact sheet presented at the meeting shows that the blight declaration has been tabled a total of eight times.

While some progress has been made in that time, lack of all utilities remains the stumbling block.

“This is a really hard one,” Committee member Denise Whipp said. “I don’t feel the property itself would be typically blighted property.”

While acknowledging sympathy for the situation the owner faces, she said that the committee “might need to make the first declaration (of blight) so she gets serious about it.”

The owner, Jessie Solock, has detailed the challenges she has had with the property, specifically financial challenges associated with the utilities.

Fire Chief and Committee member Dave Krogler raised concern that the owner has indicated both wanting to sell the property and keep the property.

Krogler said she “can’t afford what she’s done so far” and will “run into the same situation she is (in)” if she keeps it. “We need to push.”

“I really think she needs that push forward,” Director of Codes and Planning Randy Rossey added.

Chairman Ray Pring encouraged staff to inform the owner “our hope” that the property can be removed from the blight list in the next few months.

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