Your Clarksdale Press Register applauds the Mayor and Board of Commissioner’s plans to clean up Clarksdale.
Sadly, the city has torn down one house and may have torn down another without properly notifying the owners. They have paid for one with taxpayer dollars and will probably do the same for this second one.
But our point is we need to be persistent – and legally competent and diligent – in removing dilapidated homes from our community.
Abandoned homes or houses crippled and vacated after a fire are havens for crime and trouble. We have enough of that right now in Clarksdale and something must be done about these eyesores.
Those who have lived here for some time may not realize what their community looks like to tourist, industrialist looking to locate a factory and retail companies looking to open a new store.
You know the story. Old Mrs. Smith’s house on the corner has been vacant for years and while we have good memories of Mrs. Smith, she no longer lives there and the house has fallen into disrepair.
The house is unoccupied. It gets a couple of broken windows and juveniles crawl in for a look. The more sinister adults come around and steal anything of value. At some point the house catches on fire, the fire department puts it out and the neighborhood has an eyesore for years.
We said earlier it is good the city has finally decided to embark on an effort to clean up their dilapidated homes.
The plan is for the city and contractors to quickly tear down these properties and haul the debris to the dump. Contractors have also been hired to come in with dirt and level the property. The goal is to have a lot that can be mowed next year.
Clarksdale apparently has little unencumbered cash to pay for this work. But this is a strategic move for this community and our quality of life.
We hate harping on the Board of Mayor and Commissioner’s pay increase, but we hope they can find it in their heart and the city budget to adequately fund and staff this effort.
Your Clarksdale Press Register is a conservative watchdog on spending your tax dollars, but this is one project this town needs to invest in and get to work.