Resident Roger Wilhoit expressed concern to Lynch City Council about burned out homes on the city’s Main Street.
“Some of these old burned out buildings around town here, what is the status? Are the property owners going to do anything about cleaning them up?” asked Wilhoit during a recent council meeting. “I believe we have an ordinance pertaining to that.”
Mayor Johnny Adams said the only thing he knows to do is to “threaten them with the ordinance.”
“This sewer and water plant has drove me crazy for the last six or seven months and I’ve let this issue get away from me,” said Adams. “I’ve got the list with the addresses and I will start sending letters out explaining to them that court action can be taken. I intend to put in the letter if they will sign the deed over to the city we’ll take responsibility for it. That way we might get these structures torn down. We can’t do anything on property that belongs to someone else.”
Wilhoit said he believes “who ever owns the property ought to be responsible for the clean up.”
“If they are out of compliance with the city ordinance, I would be the first to say enforce it whether it’s a fine or whatever,” said Wilhoit.
Wilhoit said the burned out properties are an “eye sore” for the city.
“Let’s try to get these sites clean up. People come in here for tourism and all you see is burned out buildings right on Main Street,” said Wilhoit. “It’s not good. My suggestion is let’s get this done whether it takes letters, fines or anything else the ordinance calls for.”
Adams said a list was given to Harlan County Solid Waste supervisor Lakis Mavinidis to see if he might have funds to help clean up some of the properties.
“That’s been seven to nine months ago and we haven’t got anything definite from him on that yet,” said Adams. “We’re still hoping to get some help.”
In other action:
*Council discussed the possibility of leasing the old United Supply Store also known as the “Big Store” located on Main Street. Council agreed a proposal needs to be brought to them before a decision can be made.
Nola Sizemore may be reached at 606-573-4510, ext. 115 or on Twitter @nola_hde