Up to $43K in citations issued on 11 properties

They’ve gotten the letters, visits from codes personnel and repeatedly have been told to make some sort of repair on their properties.

Now, the city Codes Department, after not hearing back or seeing the “bare minimum” taken to address serious health and safety issues related to the construction of the buildings, is sending out 43 citations to 11 property owners, and each citation could carry a $1,000 fine in an effort to clean up residential blight.

The citations are part of the fourth installment of the city’s “shameful properties list,” Mayor Gabriel J. Campana said at a news conference Monday morning.

Joseph Gerardi, city codes administrator, said these are the worst of the worst properties, the kind that are not getting repaired and dropping the value of the neighbors’ real estate.

The list of property owners, their properties and number of citations include:

Richard Thompson, 852 W. Third St., eight

Mark Broadley, 674 First Ave., five

James Robbins, 431 Germania St., four

William Sauers and Mike Welch, 1530 Scott St., six

Rocky Boone, 744 Park Ave., four

Samuel Strothers, 435 Park Ave., four

Stephen Condo, 1037 Dewey Ave., four

Jeffrey and Lorie Welch, 1519 Scott St., three

Raymond Hauser, 2128 Central Ave., two

Paul and Tracy Kelley, 2513 Central Ave.

Lisa Doebler, 2231 W. Fourth St., one

Campana, as the city public safety director, said he has taken about two hours every week to go with codes personnel to inspect properties, including some not on the list. He’s been sitting in police vehicles as a passenger and using a decommissioned police car to inspect the blight throughout the city.

“Some of these individuals have given us no response to repeated warnings,” Campana said.

Campana said such inattentiveness to warnings by the codes department is unfair to neighbors to tolerate.

To accomplished the stepped-up measures to attack blight, Campana wants to see more codes personnel hired.

“My budget will reflect one or two more codes officers,” Campana said.

If the fines aren’t paid, the city will begin the process of acquiring the properties and demolishing them as they do in the city of Scranton, Campana said.

Campana said he has created a nuisance property task force made up of city residents who are stakeholders in areas where there are high rental property populations.

Those on the task force, to meet one a month, thus far are: Ted Lyon, Ron James, Bernie Timmons, Robbie Cross and Curley Jett.