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Council cleaning house, eyesores

By By Adam Prestridge
The City of Atmore is fighting an endless problem it faces with dilapidated houses that are becoming permanent eyesores in the area.
The council unanimously approved the first of what is expected to be several acquisitions of property within the city limits that do not meet city code Monday night. The property, which is located on Carver Avenue, is owned by Willie Lee Martin, who now lives in Michigan. The deteriorated building on the property has been an eyesore for years and only limited efforts to repair the home have been made, according to Atmore building inspector Allen Nix.
The city sent Martin a certified letter, following a meeting with city attorney Ed Hines. The letter gave him 45 days to appeal it.
"That time has expired and I'm now asking the city council to make a motion to allow us to do what needs to be done to alleviate the problem and to maintain it once it's done," Nix said.
Had Martin appealed the letter, he would have had 45 days to make the necessary improvements to bring it back up to code. A letter was also tacked to the building on the site.
"It has to be at least 50 percent deteriorated," Nix said. "They have to be in bad shape."
The building will be torn down and the property cleaned up.
A lean will be placed on the property for any debts incurred in cleaning it up, including administrative costs.
In other business, the council:
Pollard said the committee, which stopped meeting following recent hurricanes, have been meeting on a regular basis and said approximately 70 percent of the committees objectives have been met.