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City of New Iberia to move forward with demolishing blighted properties

Posted at 9:01 PM, Oct 15, 2019
and last updated 2019-10-15 22:02:42-04

The City of New Iberia voted tonight to move forward with demolishing several blighted properties in the city.

Tonight's regular meeting included public hearings on 14 properties in New Iberia that have been an issue in the city for about a year.

Councilman Marlon Lewis said that at tonight's meeting, council members voted to demolish several houses on the list.

Out of the 14 homes on the list, the council voted to demolish nine. One home, Councilman Lewis noted, had already been demolished by the owner. Lewis said he believes it's important to note that out of all the homes on the list, one owner took it upon themselves to take care of their home.

The remaining four homes will be revisited by the council in 30 days.

Lewis added that tonight's meeting was a chance for "the public [to have] an opportunity to share or comment" on the issue.

In May, KATC spoke with neighbors of one home on Emery Drive. They told us that squatters sold drugs and sex out of the abandoned homes, along with committing other crimes.

When asked how long it would take for the homes to be demolished, Lewis said he couldn't give a time frame, adding that it's a "very long" process. The process includes contacting the property owners, making sure the council made attempts to get in touch with the owner, and then the council has to make sure legally, the city can tear down the property. Next, the issues goes before the council. That's what happened tonight, Lewis said, after "months of beuracracy and red tape."

Read more about issues in New Iberia regarding blighted properties here.