JEFFERSONVILLE — “Properties: Abandoned, Vacant, Boarded and Foreclosed” — that’s the title of a new law in the Village of Jeffersonville that for some business owners …
JEFFERSONVILLE — “Properties: Abandoned, Vacant, Boarded and Foreclosed” — that’s the title of a new law in the Village of Jeffersonville that for some business owners couldn’t come soon enough.
It relates to Chapter 156 of the Village Code.
Enacted on January 10, the new law in Jeffersonville requires that owners of abandoned, vacant, boarded and foreclosed buildings must make an effort to fix the structures or face the financial consequences: a $1,000 tax levy the first year and then another $500 tacked on, spiraling each year.
“I’m optimistic that this law will push the owners of their abandoned buildings to take action,” said Jeffersonville Area Chamber of Commerce President Lauren Seikaly, “to either put their buildings back on the market for someone else to take care of, or to rent them out to the many people interested in opening a business here in Jeffersonville.”
Owner of the Jeffersonville Bake Shop, Tavern on Main and other businesses in town, Seikaly said, “We have to keep our economic growth moving forward.”
At the moment, three vacant and slowly corroding buildings in the Main Street area are under scrutiny:. Those are the Blue Victorian on Main Street, the building across the street that was last called Stella’s and the Adler Building, once owned by realtor Alfred E. Adler, which stands two buildings away from Stella’s.
“Vacant and derelict buildings must be up to standards,” said Mayor Bill Chellis, “and owners must register with the Village. Code enforcement will reach out to them.”
Should other homeowners or storeowners have problems in keeping up their property and Village taxes, he or she should contact the Village offices at 17 Center St. or call 845-482-4275.
All this is nothing new to Jeffersonville. As far back as 1997, the Village of Jeffersonville was worried about problem buildings.
“Unsafe buildings pose a threat to life and property in the Village of Jeffersonville,” explained a 224-page code of the village. “Buildings and structures may become unsafe by reason of damage by fire, the elements, age or general deterioration. Vacant buildings…also serve as an attractive nuisance for young children who may be injured therein as well as a point of congregation by vagrants and transients. A dilapidated building may also serve as a place of rodent infestation, thereby creating a health menace to the community.”
And today, New York State’s Department of Financial Services firmly agrees.
“Dilapidated vacant and abandoned properties can have a corrosive effect on local communities,” says the Department on its website, “lowering property values, attracting criminal activity, creating health and safety hazards and imposing extra costs on local government due to the additional police, fire and building safety resources they require. The negative impact these properties create can last for years while the community waits for the property to be foreclosed and sold to a new owner.”
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