City to start cracking down on negligent property owners

VIDEO: Aerial footage of problem property

WBEN Newsroom
February 15, 2020 - 11:31 am

Brendan Keany

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BUFFALO, N.Y. (WBEN) - The City of Buffalo is cracking down on negligent property owners.

Buffalo Mayor Byron Brown said that within 27 days of a property being inspected, the city will contact the owners of negligent properties. If those owners don't comply, Brown said they will immediately get the property into housing court.

"It is a problem and city inspectors are getting lists from members of the city council and the community and from datasets in departments throughout the city," Brown said. "They have identified 250 of these problem properties that are the worst of the worst. We are going to inspect these properties. We'll be using inspection blitzes and be continually monitoring these properties and putting a lot of pressure on these problem properties so they do not any longer feel comfortable owning a problem property in the City of Buffalo."

According to the city, the initiative identifies mismanaged structures, establishes a new administrative hearing and seeks higher fines to hold commercial building owners accountable for the state of their properties  

The city will also utilize aerial inspection of the houses, specifically looking at the quality of roofs. Mayor Brown said the initial inspections were done using helicopters.

Brown said negligent homeowners risk losing their entire property if they don't comply with the city.

Aaerial footage of one of the commercial problem properties, 207 Guilford, provided by the City of Buffalo..
As part of the mayors new plan, over the last month city inspectors have been collecting aerial footage by helicopter to better assist their inspection process especially when it comes to the condition of roofs. Inspectors also conducted an "inspection blitz" today of approximately 30 commercial problem properties in the city. The inspection blitzes mainly focus on the exteriors of the structure and our done on the ground.

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