Editor, The Cheshire Herald:
It was with great relief that I read an article in the Nov. 26 issue of The Herald about the possibility that the Town Council might consider establishing a “Blight Ordinance” as a separate ordinance from the “Unsafe Premises Ordinance.” I have written to both the Town Council and the Ordinance Committee during the past two years concerning the inability of the town to address unkempt and/or unsightly properties. These properties are an embarrassment to the town and could result in a decrease in the property values of neighbors and create difficulties in the sale of their homes.
Despite the fact that The Herald said that I “did not specify what property” I was referring to (in a letter to the Council), I indeed cited two properties. They are owned by the same person and to my knowledge have been in disrepair and unsightly for literally decades. The town needs to have some ability to help the neighbors who have to live next to neglected properties, and they are numerous. Neighbors are at the mercy of neglected property owners who have no respect or regard for their neighbors and for the residents of Cheshire.
I want to emphasize that the “Blight Ordinance” needs to cover more than just overgrown grass. It needs to include objects left in yards to deteriorate, deplorable or even nonexistent completion of home exteriors, among other conditions. Safety of structures should not be the only priority.
I highly encourage the Ordinance Committee and the Town Council to follow through with establishing a “Blight Ordinance” separate from the “Unsafe Premises Ordinance.” The “Unsafe Premises Ordinance” should be permanent as should the “Blight Ordinance,” both of which are long overdue. With both in place, the Town of Cheshire will be able to effectively deal with unsightly property issues in addition to unsafe structures.