Chillicothe’s efforts to remove some of the most dilapidated structures throughout the city got a significant boost with the awarding of a $125,000 grant.
The funding, approved as a Community Development Block Grant, will be used to demolish 41 dilapidated residential structures in Chillicothe. This was the city’s fourth attempt at securing grant funds, being unsuccessful the three previous times.
Mayor Chuck Haney said the city is excited to get started on this project.
“We will be getting rid of 41 homes that are eyesores, and it will increase property values for neighbors around those homes,” Haney said. “It is a true asset for our city.”
The city has been addressing the issue of dilapidated houses for several years, having removed nine structures just this year.
Through the demolition program, participating property owners will pay $500 for the demolition. The city will match that amount as well as provide in-kind services of completing necessary paperwork, inspecting the properties, and disconnecting utilities. Grant money will fund whatever costs remain.
City Codes Enforcement Officer Tammi Venneman said the list of properties includes structures in every ward of the city.
In order to qualify for the grant, the properties must have been dilapidated and unoccupied for at least a year. Venneman said aside from these 41 properties, there are approximately 30 other structures that could be considered dilapidated or in need of extensive work.
Applications for consent soon will be sent to the owners of the 41 targeted properties and the city will begin collecting the $500 homeowner fees. All homeowners will retain ownership of the property. Work is expected to begin after the first of the year with asbestos testing and asbestos abatement. The city has three years to complete the demolition.
Venneman said that it is important for homeowners to keep the structures’ doors and windows in place for public safety. She urges property owners to remove items they need and may be storing in the structures as soon as possible.
The Codes Department will be taking bids for the demolition of these properties. For additional information, contact City Hall at (660) 646-5635.