Pleasant Plains should be a little more pleasant for neighbors living around 55 Floral Road.
“I’m emptying it out and moving everything out of town,” said Brent Henderson, the property’s owner. Henderson is a member of the Independence Quorum Court.
Henderson filed a harassment complaint against Pleasant Plains Mayor Ken Burns earlier this month after Burns texted him with complaints about the property.
Rats, foul odors, swarms of insects, and falling-apart buildings are the elements of a spine-chilling Halloween movie, but it’s a real problem for the property’s neighbors.
Two citizens spoke to the city council Thursday night asking them to do something about the property.
Complaints included chicken litter and a spreader stored at the building for use on Henderson’s farm, which is 2.4 miles away. Rotten vegetables and moldy cottonseed-meal have also been stored at the property. Stagnant water in old tires on the property were cited as the cause of a mosquito and biting flies problem throughout the summer. Rusting tin from the building’s roof often flies off during storms. Trash is burned on the property and when it rains, the water flows over the burn pile into neighboring yards. The building itself has been unsecured, with jagged shards of glass dangling from broken windows.
City council members unanimously approved a resolution Thursday night finding reasonable cause the property violates city ordinance 2018-2 regarding dilapidated properties within the city limits. The resolution gives him ten business days to fix the violations.
“There’s a lot to go through for due process,” said Barrett Moore, the city’s attorney.
During the meeting he added that the resolution was a “conservative” approach to the issue. In the past, the council has voted to purchase dilapidated properties, but Moore advised the council that was not a sustainable practice.
In other news, the city approved a motion to purchase two speed bumps and signage for Wish Street to deter speeding in the area.
“It’s kids with new licenses and adults who act like kids with new licenses,” said councilman Logan Foster, who lives on Wish Street.
“You would think two hairpin curves and a low-water bridge would slow them down,” Foster said after the motion passed.
The city voted to host Trunk or Treat 6-8 p.m. Halloween night at the parking lot of the Pleasant Plains Community Center. For residents who want to give out treats at home, they are asked to turn on their porch lights and follow COVID-19 guidance from the state, including wearing a mask and gloves when handing out treats.
Mayor Ken Burns said the city is a little closer to getting a 50/50 grant for a fenced walking track for the community. The city recently added a play structure to the park and there are hopes to purchase a merry-go-round soon.