Truro Township addresses vacant property

By Tara Figurski
Staff Writer

The Truro Township officials announced they have taken steps to have a vacant property on Waggoner Road declared a nuisance.

Truro Township Administrator Jason Nicodemus said he hopes to bring legislation to have the property, located on Waggoner Road, declared a nuisance, but he has turned the issue over to the township’s legal department first.

“It has been a continuing issue,” Nicodemus. “There has been previous work done at the home.”
He said the township has had to mow grass and control the weed growth.

“Recently there has been more deteriorating from the factor of a vacant home, security and safety issues,” Nicodemus said.

Township Road Supervisor Stan Knoderer said the property owner is deceased and township officials have attempted to reach out to family members.

“We’ve contacted the next of kin and gotten no response,” he said.

Knoderer said there is a lien against the property with the Franklin County Auditor’s office for the ongoing work.

The property is currently $7,800 in tax arrears. Nicodemus said no taxes have been paid on the 1.3 acre property since 2014.

Once the property has been declared a nuisance under the township’s nuisance policy, township officials will reach out to the property owner again who then has two weeks to respond. Then township officials can begin boarding up the property.

Knoderer said he has been concerned about the property for three years. He sent a written notice to the fire chief two years ago, advising firefighters should not to be allowed in the home in the event of a fire.

“It needs to be demolished,” Knoderer said. “There is five feet of water in the basement. The home has been vandalized.”

Nicodemus said there are specific steps that need to be followed under the township’s nuisance policy.

If the situation is not corrected within a given time frame, the township can go in and secure the premises and/or hire a vendor to come in and secure the premises for unlawful entry. From there steps will be taken to recoup the cost of securing the premises.

“With the situation that it is in, the ultimate goal would most likely be for that property to be taken down,” Nicodemus said. “Because we are dealing with safety, I’d like to see it sooner rather than later.”

Wreaths Across America

Township officials prepared a flier to be distributed to residents about the Wreaths Across America program to be held at Silent Home Cemetery on Dec. 17. As part of the ceremony, a wreath will be placed on over 200 veterans’ graves.

In conjunction with members of the Capt. Eddie Rickenbacker Civil Air Patrol Squadron, Silent Home Cemetery, staff will honor veterans by placing the wreaths on the gravestones.

“This is going to be really impressive,” said Truro Township trustee Barbara Strussion.

There is an opportunity to support the program by purchasing a wreath. Wreaths are $15 per wreath and there are several sponsorship levels. Residents can log onto www.wreathsacrossamerica.org for information about sponsorship opportunities.

The program was started at Arlington National Cemetery. This is the first year Truro Township is participating in the program.

“This is the first year but we expect (the program) to grow over time,” Knoderer said.
In addition to financial contributions the township is seeking volunteers for the event to help place wreaths on the graves and greet visitors, he said.

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