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Dilapidated trailers to be torn down

Less than a week after the tax assessors approved a $500 value for unlivable manufactured homes to keep them off the tax digest, county commissioners gave the go-ahead for the county attorney and code enforcement to have the dilapidated trailers torn down. Many of these old trailers have been abandoned, some in mobile home parks and some in overgrown fields. They end up on the tax lien sale list, costing the county money because no one will buy them and by law the titles must be searched and the tax sales advertised. These costs add up and must eventually be written off by commissioners. ’A lot of them aren’t livable. They’re grown up. If we didn’t show you where they were through the bushes you couldn’t see them,’ said chief appraiser Jeannie Haddock at the Oct. 15 commission meeting. She suggested they be condemned where they stand to allow property owners ‘“ not the mobile home owners ‘“ to have them torn down and sold for scrap should there be any left. ‘They’re becoming the meth houses and the crack houses,’ said tax commissioner Andrea Anthony who is having her first mobile home tax sales this year. Under the plan, the landowner on whose property the abandoned trailer is situated would get the summons of a code violation if they are not torn down. This, in essence, gives the landowner a legal footing to do so. ’If the property owner is looking at a fine, I guarantee you they’ll clean it up,’ said county attorney Scott Mayfield. He said several had been cleared away in the past couple of years. Of more than 400 mobile homes in the county, less than 30 would be affected.

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