Trailer property under discussion

PARKERSBURG – The Wood County Abandoned and Dilapidated Building Committee will consider two properties that have been the subject of complaints.

The committee is scheduled to meet at 4:30 p.m. today in the public meeting room of the Judge Black Courthouse Annex. The meeting is open to the public.

John Reed, county director of building permits and compliance officer, said the group will consider the former Hall’s Trailer Court property, now called Emerson Manor on West Virginia 2.

“We’ve received complaints about this property dating back to August 2010,” Reed said. The property owner, William Sink of Cambridge, Ohio, could not be reached for comment.

“The owners of the trailer court took it under land contract and that fell through. The property was acquired and it no longer operates as a trailer court. It was closed and the new owners had plans to sell off the trailers. In the meantime, vandals came in and stripped the trailers for copper and aluminum and did a lot of damage. They now have 41 trailers left with the windows out, abandoned and the grass is also growing up,” Reed said. “We’ve received many complaints on the property.”

The other property to be taken before the committee is owned by Premier Bank in Ravenswood and is at Hill Street and Altman Avenue, Reed said.

“The bank gave the former property owner a construction loan. The frame for a house was put in, then the bank ended up repossessing it. It’s been sitting there for several years now and it’s to the point where the neighbors are concerned. It presents a safety hazard for the children. We’ve notified the bank and we have been trying to work with them,” Reed said.

“The committee has several options including referral of the properties to the Wood County Commission. The commissioners can then order certain things be done. They also have the authority to assess a daily $100 fine if it’s not complied with, or the committee can come up with other options for the property owners,” Reed said.

County records show complaints on the Altman Avenue property began in August 2011.

Under the county Abandoned/Dilapidated Building ordinance, safety and health complaints regarding rural properties are forwarded to enforcement officers and county engineer Bill Brown who investigate and report their findings to the committee. The committee can recommend the case be brought before the county commission.

Once the case is before the county commission, property owners are notified in writing and the property owner can request a hearing. If the owner fails to comply with clean-up requests, commissioners can seek bids for repairs, demolition, removal and cleanup. A lien can be placed against the property so the county can recoup the cost of cleanup.

The county commission can also impose the daily fine as a penalty.