Town council in Battleford has indicated they want to see some response to complaints they received about properties on 28th Street in Battleford.
Council passed a resolution Oct. 7 to write a letter to encourage the Battlefords Housing Authority to keep their properties in good condition. The resolution is in response to correspondence that came to town council about the state of two properties run by the housing authority on the 300 block of 28th Street.
The town received two letters from residents about the problems on the block. Concerns were expressed about a drive-by shooting incident at one of those residences on the 300 block earlier this year, but there were also concerns about the condition of the property.
Problems cited include uncut grass, back alleys overrun by weeds and trees, and police being called to respond to incidents in the area. There were also concerns that property values along the block were being impacted.
In one letter dated Aug. 14, local resident Bill Hall expressed alarm over the drive-by shooting incident. He stated that in spite of contacting Battlefords Housing Authority with concerns, there had been no improvement.
“In the 21 years I have lived on 28th Street, we have never experienced such an occurrence and worry about the decline in our neighbourhood as a result of [Battlefords] Housing not maintaining any standards for many of their rentals,” Hall stated. “Just two days ago a neighbour went door to door to warn residents of break-ins and thefts that had occurred this week on 28th Street.”
“If something isn't done soon, 28th Street will become an undesirable place to live and raise a family. Already neighbours have been told when having a real estate appraisal that [Battlefords] Housing units on our block are responsible for a lower appraisal.”
The discussion at council saw members agree it was important to “get on it,” as one councillor put it, and to keep a close watch the properties.
The general feeling was a letter to the housing authority was the appropriate action for now. If more needs to be done, the town could consider further steps in the future such as bylaw enforcement.
The recommendation to send the letter to the housing authority passed unanimously.