Tulsa proposition to address nuisance homes passes

Posted at 4:18 PM, Nov 15, 2017
and last updated 2017-11-15 17:22:26-05

TULSA -- Monica Diaz-Short has lived on Nogales Avenue for most of her life.

She said with more boarded up homes, homelessness and crime, safety is a growing priority.

"My dad always preached to us about keeping the gates locked and just making sure you’re watching out and there’s no random people coming up to the gates and doors… we keep an eye out," Diaz-Short said.

Stephen Buford also grew up in the neighborhood. Now as an investor, he's pushed out problem neighbors and hopes to improve empty homes.

"We’ve had our fair share of murders in the last 20-something months in the neighborhood, I think we’ve had four," Buford said.

The new proposition clarifies the city can clean up a nuisance property without notifying the owner, if there is a second violation within two years. Staff with code enforcement tells us there are currently 280 active demolition cases in various stages of enforcement.

"Once they board up a house, nothing happens to it. And I think they could do a better job of following through with some of those homeowners," Buford said.

On average the cost of demolition is about $5,000. Neighbors hope city funding and local investors are able to turn around Nogales Avenue before crime gets worse.

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