Sioux Falls Gives Bad Neighbors The Boot
by Brian Kirk, Meteorologist/Reporter
November 13, 2013 5:56 PM
This year alone, the Sioux Falls Police have responded to calls at a Summit Avenue home 42 times, and code enforcement has 25 incidents with the home owner and the property. Even after all the tickets and the fines, nothing seemed to be changing.
Then one neighbor just simply had enough. She wrote a letter to the mayor and the city responded. City officials visited the house, condemned the site, boarded it up, and now it’s slated to be demolished.
On Wednesday the city of Sioux Falls sent a big message to poorly kept-up property by condemning the problem house. Officials also thanked the particular effort by the long-time neighbor. The neighbor’s son, Dave Inks, says neighboring homeowners can't be intimidated.
"I think a lot of them are afraid to say anything, especially older people most of the time, they just got to stand up,” Dave Inks said.
The woman’s family is just relieved they won't have to put up with the problems any more. The city of Sioux Falls says that any reports of nuisance properties will be investigated, no matter how small.
“We would much rather deal with issues when they are minor, so we can get them quickly and easily cleared up, and if that doesn't occur, you have the promise of the code enforcement team that that will follow up,” said Kevin Smith, from Sioux Falls Planning and Building Services.
The last thing the city wants are neighbors holding their tongues and not taking action.
“We don't want people to have to, as their solution, simply close the blinds and hope it goes away, because we know from our experience it never gets any better,” continued Smith.
With the removal of the bad tenants, comes the peace and quiet that so many neighbors have missed.