Flood buyout program almost done



January 27, 2010 - 12:00 AM

Micky Davis, hired by the city in 2008 to oversee Iola’s flood buyout program, said the city should be able to officially close the books on the buyout in February or March.
All but a handful of the 120 flood-damaged homes have been purchased by the city and demolished, Davis told Iola commissioners Tuesday.
The few exceptions were those who chose to elevate their homes and rebuild; those who could not sell the properties because of legal requirements (such as not having clear titles to their properties); and some who simply could not be located.
There remain a few residents who still have not received all of their compensation due for relocation expenses, Davis said. He expected those cases to be resolved in the next few weeks.
Commissioner Craig Abbott asked Davis about the delays in getting the relocation funds out to residents, counting three phone calls he received from folks expecting money but not receiving it for weeks afterward.
Davis declined to go into specifics because of privacy issues, but said anyone with questions about their reimbursement should contact him or the city.
Davis expected to have the final figures for the city in March regarding the amount of money spent on the buyout and exactly how many homes were destroyed, and how many now can be condemned and torn down.

THE TRASH pickup schedule for some residents in north Iola will change starting in March, Street and Alley Superintendent Dan Leslie said.
The changes are necessitated because of the 2007 flood and addition of several new homes near Cedarbrook Golf Course, Leslie said.
Starting in March, those north of Allen County Community College and along North State Street will have their trash picked up on Wednesdays instead of Tuesdays, Leslie said. The second-day trash pickup on Fridays will remain unchanged.

IN A RELATED matter, commissioners approved a zoning change of a parcel of land near Cedarbrook Golf Course.
The land is currently zoned as a single-family residential area and will be changed to a multi-family residential area.
The change will accommodate construction of a senior apartment complex, Code Enforcement Officer Jeff Bauer said.

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