City Ordinance To Be Changed?

If the ordinance passes, property owner will then have 48 hours to secure their property and clean up debris. They would then have 30 days to either get a building or demolition permit for their fire damaged properties.
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In the past, it has taken property owners nearly three months or longer to either demolish or rebuild their homes after a fire.

Bowling Green's Code Enforcement Officers will head before the Bowling Green City Commission Tuesday, Feb. 6, 2007, to try to change the current ordinance in hopes of speeding up the process from 90 days to 30 days.

"Here recently, in the last year, year and a half, a lot of fires that have happened has had an extended period of time on repairing of the structures," said Alex Colovos, Bowling Green code enforcement coordinator.

Code enforcement officers are hoping that by shortening the time deadline to have severely fire-damaged houses either repaired or demolished will keep the properties around it from decreasing in value.

A prospect that some citizens were worried about.

"If a property has burnt out or is partially burnt and the owners' of that property take a long time to repair it, then the aesthetic value of the neighborhood does go down," Colovos said.

Bowling Green Code Enforcement conducted a survey of other cities in Kentucky to find out how long they allow fire-damaged homes to be left untouched. They found that Bowling Green has the longest length of time of all of the cities surveyed.

The proposed ordinance change will hopefully correct that.

"What we do is after the fire occurs, within 24 hours, we will call on the property owner to advise them on whether they are going to have to have a permit to either rebuild or demolish," Colovos continued.

The property owner would then have 48 hours to secure the property and clean up debris. They would then have 30 days to either get a building or demolition permit.

The City Commission will also discuss issues dealing with possible traffic changes, budget money earmarked to improve conditions in the enterprise community, and allocating more money for the city's new Chamber of Commerce parking.

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