By Dewain E. Peek,
Livingston City Council met Monday, July 15 to hear a property maintenance appeal.
Mayor Curtis Hayes opened the meeting informing the Board of Aldermen, “Mr. James Vassilev has appealed a decision made by our Property Maintenance Committee and he would wish to speak to the Board.”
Livingston Property Maintenance Advisory Board had previously found Vassilev’s property at 719 Hi Tech Drive in violation of Title 13, Chapter 1 of the Property Maintenance Ordinance.
Mayor Hayes asked Codes Inspector Kristian Mansell to bring the Board up to date on the property.
“He has cleaned his yard up,” Mansell said.
He indicated that Vassilev wanted more time to get his vehicles in compliance.
Alderman Kelly Coleman asked for clarification of just what the Board of Aldermen were being asked to do in the hearing, noting that appeals of the abandoned and inoperative vehicle part of the property maintenance code is to be heard by the municipal judge.
Mayor Hayes said that there were some issues that come under the Miscellaneous code that is set in the code to be appealed to the City Council.
Alderman David Langford asked who made the complaint against Vassilev.
Mansell said it was an anonymous letter.
Langford said, “If it’s an anonymous letter, then as far as I’m concerned, it didn’t happen. I make a motion we dismiss it.
“If a person can’t sign the paper, forget it.”
Alderman Ronald Dishman seconded the motion.
Mayor Hayes asked for any discussion and Alderman Ken Dodson said, “The codes that this Board voted on and approved specifically stated that these complaints did not have to be signed. So this is as valid and legal as any that we will ever receive.”
Dodson did not identify where such wording appears in the municipal code relating to property maintenance.
On the vote, the motion failed with Aldermen Rex Dale, Chris Speck, Coleman, and Dodson voting no, and Aldermen Dishman and Langford voting yes.
Vassilev was then given the floor to speak to the City Council.
“First of all, I’m sorry this all happened,” Vassilev said.
He said health problems last year and earlier this year have hindered his efforts to clean up the property.
“I’m working on it,” he said.
Vassilev also was in violation of the abandoned and inoperative vehicle code, though he said he would be tagging the vehicles. His time would be up on the vehicles on Friday, July 19, according to Mansell.
Mayor Hayes clarified that Vassilev was asking the Board for a 60-day extension to get his property in compliance with the Miscellaneous property code.
Langford made a motion to give Vassilev the 60 days, and Dishman seconded.
Coleman asked what he had left to do to the property, and Vassilev said he had to remove some mowers and to cut down some tall weeds.
On the vote, Dale, Coleman, Dishman, Dodson, Langford, and Speck all voted yes.
The hearing adjourned.