City council targets dilapidated homes and buildings

LEWIS COUNTY, W.Va. (WDTV) -- The Weston City Council recently passed the first reading of two ordinances that deal with the treatment of unsafe and vacant buildings. The ordinances are not new, but have been revised to target places that could harm several people.

Weston city council recently passed the first reading for two ordinances that deals with certain homes and buildings in town.

"We have some homes in the city that are either in partial collapse or nearing total collapse," said Weston City Manager Chad Minnick. "It's really creating a health and safety issue on a variety of fronts."

Minnick says the ordinances could create a system that would solve the issues with the abandoned buildings and homes.

"Part of the ordinance will establish what were calling an unsafe building commission made up of staff members that are not just qualified to judge whether the structure is in good shape or not but does this property contribute to blight," Minnick said.

Minnick says that 104 homes and buildings on are on the list of places that are in need of change. Minnick says that a lot of the places that council is targeting are located on Route 19 North and South and Route 33 East and West.

"It's a combination of vacant and abandoned and dilapidated," Minnick said. "I would hope by April that we have a solid first dozen we can attack. There's probably going to be an equal distribution between being on 33 and 19 and then being out in some of the neighborhoods."

Minnick says that everything is a process but is hoping to get the structure going as soon as possible.

"Continue to report anything that you see in your neighborhoods that you want us to take a look at," Minnick said. "Hopefully by late spring or early summer, we'll be able to start seeing some houses come down."

The next city council meeting is set for November 4.