South side residents keep heat on Lima council

Third public hearing set for July 1

By Sam Shriver -

LIMA — A pitch for more money to go toward the funding of the demolition of dilapidated houses on Lima’s south side was once again thrown at Lima City Council, and at one point became heated during Monday’s meeting.

Bill Jackson of Lima voiced concern about the boarded up and dilapidated vacant properties in Lima, specifically a home next to him that caught fire but nothing had been done to tear it down.

“I think we’ve been neglected in the fifth and sixth wards,” Jackson told Council.

Fifth Ward Lima councilman Jamie Dixon agreed. He grilled Community Development Director Susan Crotty about some agencies using money carried over from previous years. He instead would have like to see that carry over moved into housing demolition.

Dixon accused Crotty of giving him the run-around when it came to questions he had about the process. “I take exception to that,” said Crotty.

At the Community and Economic Development committee meeting last week, many people expressed a desire to see more of the $1 million in Community Development Block Grants and HOME funds go toward the funding of the demolition of dilapidated houses on Lima’s south side.

This was the second public hearing and the first before the full council to discuss the projects that are earmarked for these funds.

There were 14 proposals for more than $3.6 million under the CDBG program alone.

Crotty provided a brief overview of the plan, noting the city’s total allocations decreased by about $50,000 from the previous year.

The application for HUD funds is in the final year of a five-year cycle.

A third public hearing is set for July 1. The deadline to submit applications to HUD is mid-August.

In other business:

Bill Mears had the privilege of the floor to thank Lima council and specifically 2nd ward councilman Sam McLean for their support in trying to shut down a drug house in his neighborhood on Biscayne Drive. He reported that the media attention and the council’s support helped convince the landlord to evict the suspected drug dealers.

Sgt. Damon Engleman with the regional bomb squad reported to Lima Council about their activities. “The bomb squad averages around 40 calls a year,” said Engleman.

Council also approved:

• Allowing the mayor to enter into a contract with Downtown Lima Inc. for a parking study of the central business district.

• Granting permission to Square Fair Inc. to hold a “Toast to the City” in the town square.

Third public hearing set for July 1

By Sam Shriver

Reach Sam Shriver at 567-242-0409.

Reach Sam Shriver at 567-242-0409.

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