NUTLEY, NJ - Nutley resident Jeana Somers approached the Board of Commissioners concerned about a dilapidated neighboring house at the Aug. 1 public meeting.  Somers feels the foreclosed house is inhibiting her family from selling their home on Stager Street which they had up for sale since March.y

“The property next door to us is a foreclosed property; some structures attached to the garage are falling apart there are weeds growing on the property. It’s an eye sore,” she said.  “Animals and carpenter bees are affecting my property as well,” she added.

Somers also said there someone put caution tape up around the foreclosed property what she believes is drawing neighboring children to be curious and look around the house.

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Revenue and Finance Commissioner Thomas J. Evans offered help and suggestions to Somers. He recommended following up with the code enforcement department about a privacy fence, which Somers said her realtor also suggested getting. 

Evans requested Somers to provide him her phone number and address of the house. “If the owner isn’t taking care of it, the bank is responsible to take care of the property. My office handles the follow up for that,” he said.

“If the garage is in danger; if it’s an unsafe structure it will be taken down. That’s allowed under the ordinance, the construction official has that authority to make that order and no one can object to it. As for property maintenance, the property has to be cleaned up,” he said.

Evans said if the owner or bank are unwilling to clean it up the township will make sure it is and place a lien on the property. “We will put a lien on that property so that when it is sold the township tax payers get reimbursed for that service,” he said.

Also addressing the Board was Somer’s son, Ronan Sommers, 11.  Ronan is a member of Boy Scout Troop 22 in Bloomfield and attended the meeting to earn his Citizenship in the Community Merit Badge. Ronan questioned an item on the agenda. “What is the FMBA and why do they need to approve the application,” he asked. Mayor and Public Works Commissioner Joseph P. Scarpelli answered his questions. “The FMBA is the Firemen's [Mutual] Benevolent Association and they are having a raffle on Sunday and they are doing that to raise funds,” he said.

Ordinance

An ordinance to reconstruct the roadway on Harrison Street with grant monies of $252,504 received from the New Jersey Department of Transportation was approved.

The next Board of Commissioners meeting is scheduled for 7 p.m. Tuesday, Aug. 15.

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