Abandoned building effort on hold

Forrest Matti’s efforts to get abandoned properties cleaned up are in a holding pattern until the Nebraska Legislature meets in April, but he’s not just circling.
    Matti, a Hamlet village trustee who stresses he is not acting for his board, but as a concerned citizens, has met with other municipalities and has been in contact with the Nebraska League of Municipalities about ways to streamline the process of getting rid of such buildings — as well as finding ways to get state help with the cost of tearing them down.
    Matti said abandoned buildings are not merely an eyesore, but are a health hazard due to the presence of chemicals, rodents and other animals and also are a danger to young people who might be tempted to enter them. But the smallest towns often cannot afford the cost of tearing them down, from removing asbestos to trucking the demolished materials off to lined landfills.
    He said he has obtained a copy of legislation written by Sen. Tom Briese of Albion that could address much of the problem.

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