Blight Control: A Priority in 2017

The City Commission has directed City Staff to take a firm stance on blight control and promotion of cleaning-up Caldwell top priorities in 2017.  It's no secret that the Chisholm Trail's 150th Anniversary is this year.  Caldwell is expecting large crowds for the Chisholm Trail Festival in May and again in September for a CT 150th celebratory cattle drive.  Wouldn't it be great for visitors to see a clean and tidy Caldwell for these events instead of cars parked in the grass and junk accumulated on front porches and lawns?

The purpose of this article is to urge residents to take pride in his/her property and begin the process of cleaning up before Code/Zoning Enforcement write up property violations.  What may seem like "no big deal" to you, often times is a big deal to your neighbors.  City Staff has worked to address blight on both residential and commercial properties when they have gotten out of control in the past, but consider that a courtesy to those that continue to maintain blighter properties, as this will no longer be the case.  

With a small staff, the City has started addressing blight in the downtown business district and will move down Main Street in to residential areas and then out street by street.  If you suspect that your property might be in violation what can you do now? Contact Public Works Office 845-6676 to check to see what/if your property has any violations and/or let us know what your clean-up plans are, being mindful that the shortest time line possible for each circumstance will be required.  Begin the process of correcting violations such as but not limited to inoperable vehicle storage and vehicles being parked on grass.  Both are big eyesores and will be addressed as part of this beautification effort. 

Who will be contacting you if your porperty is in violation?  Josh Vanek-Code Enforcement, Arcine Thompson- Zoning Administrator, Marc Marcrum- Public Works Supervisor, Gene Garcia- City Marshal, and TJ Ohlemeir-Assistant City Marshal. 

Downtown building owners using buildings for storage, this blight control effort applies to you as well.  The City Office is often contacted about small businesses wishing to find a building in downtown Caldwell.  Sadly, we have some that are in dire need of repaor or worse and others haven't housed a business in years and are being used for storage.  Both violations will be addressed by City Staff. Unfortunately some buildings are in the condemnation process, due to years of neglect.  

Use of a downtown building for storage is a zoning violation and does nothing to help bring commerce yo our business district by generating sales tax for Caldwell.  Sales tax generated locally helps our community pay for sucg things as roads and park improvements.  The City is aware of the buildings being used for storage and will be working with their owners cleaning them out.  A more proper storage solution would be renting storage units.  

We urge everyone to start now on making a plan for cleaning out and cleaning up all properties.  Caldwell residents and business owners only, please put Saturday April 1st on their calendars for a City Wide Clean-up Day. 

Does your house need painted?  We have a grant for that!  Does your downtown building need a roof? We have a grant for that too!  Call the City Office for more details at 845-6514.  The City Commission is mindful that these things cost money and want to help our residents and business owners cover some of these costs.  It will help give you a sense of pride in your property and by fixing leaking downtown building roofs, you not only help secure your building but also those that adjoin your property. With aged downtown buildings, this is key to helping to protect important pieces of our history.  Let's put on our boots and get to work making Caldwell look better than ever! 

If you need volunteers to help you with your clean-up efforts, check with the youth in your neighborhood.  Many of them need volunteer hours for school, Church youth groups, or would just like to help a neighbor in need.  Need suggestions?  You may call the City Office at 845-6514 for help finding volunteers and we will help point you in the right direction.