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Jasper County Tribune

Colfax City Council to momentarily suspend 657A action on property

Council members Karla Jones and Curtis Small discuss with one another during a Colfax City Council meeting.
Council members Karla Jones and Curtis Small discuss with one another during a Colfax City Council meeting.

The Colfax Council has decided it will momentarily suspend the process of 657A action against the property located at 500 W. Washington where no one has been residing since at least 2010 according to the council documents.

The action would allow for the city to petition the courts for ownership of abandoned or unsafe properties with the goal of improving them. There are properties receiving this action but one owner asked the city for the process to be stopped for them to try and fix what is wrong.

“The owner has asked us to stop that,” mayor David Mast said.

The reasoning behind the owner of this property asking the city to stop this action was so that they could do some work to the property. The hope for the owner is they could do enough work to bring the property up to code.

“What are they planning to do?” councilwoman Karla Jones said.

Mast added, “Verbally, they are planning to bring it into compliance.”

The council had plenty of discussion about what the appropriate action would be. Whether it should stop the process altogether or momentarily suspend it to allow the property owner to come forward with their plan for the property.

“Probably doesn’t look good in court, if they say they are trying and we didn’t let them try,” council member Brad Magg said.

The final decision was a motion to suspend the 657A process for one month to allow more time to learn about the plans for the property. The month allows the owner to come forward with a written plan for what they will do with the property.

“I would assume we would ask for that in writing so we have some documentation for court if they don’t comply,” Magg said.

In other business:

• Mayor David Mast read a proclamation at the beginning of the meeting to show the appreciation to Doug Zimmerman of Rock Glen Design for his crafting of the video the City of Colfax used to compete in the recent water tower contest through the Iowa Finance Authority.

• The city of Colfax approved the increase of wages for part-time Colfax police officers from $20.00 to $25.00 per hour.

* There will be a new member of the Colfax Public Library board as the Colfax city council approved the addition of Tammy Wickett to the library board.

• The Colfax City Council set the dates for the public hearings on the Water Main Project for Jan 13. This will allow for the public to come in and hear information and details as it pertains to the project.

Contact Dustin Teays at 641-792-3121 ext. 6533 or dteays@newtondailynews.com

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