Ward 3 seat on council filled by appointment

Whitney Sager

The Ward 3 council seat on the Nevada City Council has been filled.

Jim Walker of Nevada was sworn in to the position during the Dec. 9 council meeting. Walker is the former superintendent of the Nevada School District and a long-time resident of Nevada. After swearing him in, Mayor Lynn Lathrop appointed Walker to serve on the fire and EMS board.

Walker will serve the remaining two years of former Ward 3 councilman Brett Barker’s term. Barker resigned from his position on the council last month after learning the home he moved into in July did not fall within the Ward 3 boundaries.

Update on abandoned home

During the public forum, council heard from Julia Stephens of State Center, who owns an abandoned home at 1419 Third St. in Nevada. At the last council meeting, it was decided to give Stephens until Monday night’s meeting to obtain a contract committment from a contractor to have the house torn down.

Monday night, Stephens reported she had talked to two contractors and gotten a contract from one of the two. She still needed to find out the cost of the asbestos testing for the home, which would be added to the overall cost of the demolition. Stephens said she believes the electricity to the home has been shut off and the home is scheduled to have the gas lines dug up.

She would like to take advantage of the city’s cost-share program that would cover up to 50 percent of the demolition, but would need to fill out paperwork for that before the city files a petition with the district court to have the property declared a nuisance. It has been recommended by city staff to file a petition after Stephens failed to make improvements to the property, as instructed by the city since the middle of last year, in order to have it not declared abandoned or a nuisance.

While no action was taken on the matter during the meeting, council directed the city attorney to hold off on drafting paperwork to be submitted to the district court until January. Stephens has until the Jan. 8 to submit the total cost of demolition and an application for the city’s cost-share program.

Indian Ridge preliminary plat approved

Also during Monday night’s meeting, council approved a preliminary plat for Indian Ridge Plat 5. This will allow Friedrich Iowa Realty to begin work on the property, located to the north of the existing homes in Indian Ridge. When completed, Friedrich’s development will add 13 single-family lots on the south side of the new development and 26 town homes to the north of those. Work is expected to begin on the devewlopment next spring.