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Greenville: “Take down building or we’ll sue”

On Monday, June 8, Greenville Town Council came together for their monthly meeting at City Hall. The session was kicked off with a second public hearing in order to discuss and possibly approve the FFY 2014 CDBG Application in the amount of $600,000 for Phase 1 of construction of the new Wastewater Treatment Plant. If the grant is approved, Greenville will begin to replace the dilapidated sewer system with a bigger, better tank. Phase 2, if approved, will replace the rest of the dilapidated tanks. After the public had a chance to speak and ask questions, the council unanimously approved the Phase 1 grant application in order to meet the June 22 deadline. Next, the council reviewed a request from the Spirit of Greenville fireworks committee for a donation from the Town of Greenville to go towards fireworks for the annual Fourth of July celebration in Haffye Hays Park. The council unanimously voted to donate the amount of $300, as they have in years past. Afterwards, Town Manager Tim Day requested the council approve the removal of the former fire station structures. Day informed the council that, upon participating in a disaster preparedness session, he felt the removal of the structures, which are in poor condition, would be most beneficial to the town and would maintain citizen safety. The council unanimously voted to approve the removal. The last agenda item included a public hearing to discuss the abandoned property on 129 SW Old Mission Avenue and it's possible demolition.

The building has been a nuisance to the citizens of Greenville and, according to code, whenever the city determines that a property is maintained as a nuisance, a notice of abatement is to be sent. The Town of Greenville has sent multiple notices to abate nuisance to the abandoned property owners with no response. The last notice sent (in May) was received and property owner, Alan Lew, traveled to Greenville in order to address the council at the June 8 meeting. Lew requested a five day extension in order for him to have a full thirty days from the meeting, on. Secondly, he requested the town allow him the opportunity to sell the property within the thirty days if an interested buyer was found or if a contractor was interested in fixing the damage. “I would rather get a commitment from you tonight that you will have that building out of there by July 8; I've seen the damage, you haven't-- the structure is beyond repair,” said Town Manager Tim Day. After much discussion and weighing all options, the town council unanimously voted to allow Alan Lew until July 8 to have the structure removed, adding if Lew fails to follow orders, the council will direct the town attorney to pursue legal action in court. Next, JC Fead, Public Works Supervisor, approached the council, informing them that various surveillance systems are being looked into for added park security, in order to begin cracking down on criminal activity. Council members and citizens discussed the possibility of fencing around the problem area, however most agreed it would be an eye sore and hinder Country Christmas vendors and festivities. “We don't want to make it look like a prison camp,” said Town Manager Tim Day. Fead added, “We need to come up with a solution for the Sheriff's Department saying 'this is what we want,' and 'this is what we don't want,' and pass it on to them and let them deal with it.” Everyone agreed that with stricter regulations and added law enforcement, change could occur.

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