FAIRVIEW — The town of Fairview is asking a property owner to clean up a dilapidated former apartment building or the town will do it for him, at his expense.
At Monday night’s Fairview town council meeting, Mayor Keith Henry said he’d done some research on how the town could get the owner of the old Craft building to clean up the property. Previous requests from the town to the owner have not been successful, he said.
“If he won’t clean it up, we are allowed to clean it up and charge him for it,” said Henry. The town could place a tax lien on the property in order to get repayment.
Cullman County property tax records indicate the building, which sits on 1.5 acres near the intersection of Hwy. 69 and Wesley Ave., is owned by Pete Dube, who listed a post office box address in Hanceville. According to property records, the building was built in 1973, and Dube bought the property from Mrs. Earnie Craft in 2013.
The two-story building is vacant and has suffered extensive damage. Council members said they are concerned about the safety of the structure and that it could attract vagrants.
“I just don’t want to see anybody hurt,” said Councilman Steve Edelman.
Councilman Charles Banister noted that recent storms have caused more damage. “It’s gotten worse since we contacted him,” he said.
Council members also reported back on outreach they’d done to community members. Councilwoman Julie Grimes had suggested the town needed to develop short-term plans to accompany its 20-year plan, and recommended each council member talk to different sectors of the community.
Henry said he’d talked to Fairview school and pre-school leaders. The owner of the Early Years Preschool said, “she was tickled to death to be in Fairview,” said Henry. School leaders indicated they would like the town to help teachers purchase school supplies and help the school replace its sign.
In talking to community members, Henry said several mentioned the wooded trails at the town park needed improvement; a few asked about adding a splash pad to the park; and another asked about getting pickleball courts at the park.
The mayor said the town does have an old tennis court that is not used. “We could get four pickleball courts in place of one tennis court,” he said. “I don’t think it would take a whole lot to do that.”
The council also discussed a request by a resident to turn an unused part of the town park into an archery course, but balked over safety concerns and the cost of targets.
However, the council did approve taking measures to address drainage problems on some of the park trails.
They also discussed creating an online community calendar, another item requested by residents.