12/20/05 — Council targets two more houses

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Council targets two more houses

By Kenneth Fine
Published in News on December 20, 2005 1:48 PM

Goldsboro's City Council members voted to condemn a dilapidated dwelling Monday at their final meeting of the year, following through with their promise to continue efforts to clean up the city.

The home, located at 214 Oak St., has been under the watch of the Inspections Department since August 2004 for violating minimum housing standards set by the state.

Goldsboro's chief building inspector Ed Cianfarra said the house has rotten seals, deteriorating siding and broken windows.

Despite the condemnation order, council granted the property owner, Southern Atlantic Conference Association of Seventh-Day Adventists Inc., 90 days to bring the building up to code.

The organization did not ask for the extension.

Action on the second dwelling slated for condemnation, located at 502 Slocumb St., was postponed until the next council meeting.

Cianfarra said that although the property was in dilapidated condition and that ample time had been given for repair, he did feel the owner had made some effort to fix it.

"The outside of the house actually looks pretty good," he said.

Property owner Willie Worrells was present Monday and asked the council for an extension, and said he has been trying hard to complete the repairs necessary to meet minimum housing standards.

"I haven't stopped working on it," he said. "Give me four months, and it will be done."

While the council made no decision regarding an extension for further repair of the property, no action will be taken until the first meeting of 2006.

The council also approved the planning and design of the second phase in the City Hall project. At a projected cost of $2.5 million, the project will include the renovation of the current City Hall, expansion of the council chambers and construction of a bridge connecting the building to the new City Hall.

Designs and early planning will be completed by Hobbs Architects P.A. at a cost of $206,500.

At the request of City Manager Joe Huffman, Council also approved changing City Hall's business hours. Beginning in February 2006, hours will change to 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Mayor Al King said the existing hours, 8:15 a.m. to 5:15 p.m., were originally intended to give working residents a chance to pay their water bills when they got off work. However, a study conducted by the city showed only a handful of customers paid after 5 p.m.