10/06/04 — Mount Olive to demolish houses

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Mount Olive to demolish houses

By Bonnie Edwards
Published in News on October 6, 2004 1:58 PM

MOUNT OLIVE -- The town is demolishing two houses.

The Mount Olive town board voted unanimously Monday night to contract with A&K Demolition and Grading to take down houses at 311 E. Pollock St. and 210 W. John St.

The board approved a budget amendment to cover the $8,200 expense, since town officials had not expected to have to destroy the houses. It will cost $3,500 to take down the house on Pollock Street and $4,700 to take down the one on John Street.

Town Manager Ray McDonald reminded the board members that they have already given the property owners two years to repair the houses.

Town Attorney Carroll Turner said the board has worked with one of the owners for four years. He said he remembers the other one, the Caveness-Miller house, from 30 years ago when he was on the town board.

Demolition is a last resort, said Building Inspector Kenny Talton. He had not planned in the budget for it. "We thought something would be done," he said.

Now, he said, it looks as if there are four more buildings that may need to come down.

He complimented other property owners, Ronald Lassiter and Leonard Sasser, on taking down the old lightning rod plant on Old Smith Chapel Road past Daughtry Field Road. He said they contacted A&K about demolishing their commercial buildings, which had become an eyesore on the road into town.

"It has improved the property tremendously," he said. "The property owners did an outstanding job. They should be commended."

They were among the 20 property owners contacted two months ago about dilapidated buildings. Talton said the houses and commercial buildings had fallen into disrepair for a number of reasons. All were abandoned. Most owners lived out of town. Some were heir properties, each owned by several family members.

He said about 75 percent of the owners contacted him and did something to improve their properties.