Board schedules public hearing to discuss the property at 215 Railroad St.

Published 11:27 am Friday, November 25, 2016

The Brookhaven Board of Aldermen called a special meeting Tuesday to reschedule a public hearing concerning a piece of property on Railroad Street.

Ward 4 Aldermen Shirley Estes, Ward 5 Aldermen Fletcher Grice, Ward 6 Aldermen David Phillips and Aldermen-at-large Karen Sullivan were present for the meeting.

The quorum unanimously voted to reschedule the public hearing to Dec. 19 at 5:30 p.m. in the Lincoln County Government Complex boardroom.

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Due to scheduling issues with the parties involved, the public hearing was postponed last week.

The public hearing will discuss the structure at 215 Railroad St. — a property that has been on the city’s building clean-up list for several years.

The board will hear from the owners of the property and the owners of neighboring homes.

“We’ve got notebooks concerning the hearing,” City Attorney Joe Fernald said. “We’ve gone out and taken pictures of the property in question. We’re going to take some more prior to the meeting, but you’ll have a book with the law in it, time frames and all the processes that we’ve gone through for the hearing.”

At an October board meeting, city building inspector David Fearn notified the board that 215 Railroad St. had been transferred to two new owners.

“After speaking with the city attorney, we need to have another public hearing with the new owners. We have to go through the same process with the two new owners,” he said

Lawrence C. Smith Jr., one of the new owners of the property, requested the board give him time to clean up the property and structure before following through with its removal, as recommended at a July public hearing.

“Me and Roger Smith, my older brother, are the new owners of the property at 251 Railroad St.,” Smith told board members at the Oct. 4 meeting. “What we are asking is the board to allow us 90 days to clean up, secure the property, get that outward appearance in decent shape and up to city code.”

The Board of Aldermen cannot take action on an item at a public hearing. After hearing from several parties at the public hearing, the board will be able to take action at its Dec. 20 regularly scheduled meeting.