Shelbyville Daily Union

November 8, 2013

City looks to demolish dangerous buildings

Valorie Eversole Daily Union Editor
Shelbyville Daily Union

---- — The Shelbyville City Council is looking for answers for the future of some dangerous buildings in town.

The Lidster Hotel on South Washington and the fire damaged building on North Morgan are targeted for possible demolition due to the potential safety issues. The Lidster Hotel has broken windows and crumbling walls. The building in the 100 block of North Morgan Street was damaged by fire in May.

City attorney Jack Kiley noted that the city could choose to demolish, enclose, or repair the buildings.

“The municipality has to first notify the owners. Then the municipality can take action if the owners do nothing,” said Kiley. “ It’s a rather long process.”

Although problems with the Lidster has been discussed before, efforts to locate the owners have been hampered.

“On the Lidster, we tried to make contact numerous times. It’s confusing who owns it now,” said city Police Chief David Tallman.

“The Lidstrer is just as dangerous, if not more so, than the burned out building. It’s caved in and the rooms are open,” Tallman added. “It’s past boarding up.”

He added that vagrancy is also a problem

But with demolition comes a price tag, especially if asbestos is involved.

“Ten years ago we had a quote of $60,000 to tear it (Lidster) down,” said commissioner Brent Fogleman.

Commissioner Thom Schafer asked if there were any grants available to help with the cost of demolition, especially with the presence of asbestos.

“We need to talk with the EPA to see if there are any grants for this kind of thing,” Schafer said.

Although these two building were the main topics of discussion, the council noted that abandoned homes could also be subject to demolition if they are uninhabitable. Owners would be given a certain amount of time to take action.

The council agreed to have Kiley work to locate and contact the owners of the buildings.

A new police sergeant was sworn in Monday evening as the city council witnessed the ceremony.

Officer Paul Bennett became the newest sergeant on October 24

“We have two sergeants and this brings us to full force,” said Chief Tallman.

In other business:

- Commissioner Schafer asked residents not to burn trash in open areas, citing the offensive odor. He also encouraged residents to bag leaves to take to city waste dump. He noted that the yard waste causes problems with the city’s drainage and sewer system.

- Schafer also reported that easements were being attained for drainage work on East Northland Drive. “We’re trying to drainage issues on as many streets as time and money allows,” he said.

- Commissioner Bill Shoaff reported the completion of the work on the water storage tank on South Hickory Street and the cleaning of the east water tower. He also reported that easements were being attained for a new sewer line on North 12th Street.

- Commissioner Brent Fogleman reported that the new emergency siren will be delivered later this month and hopes to have it installed before winter weather sets in.