Property cleaned over owner’s protest

Published 3:56 pm Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Property along Canal Street was cleaned by city personnel Thursday after numerous attempts to have the property owner clean it failed.

Frank Brown, owner of the property on Canal Street, was unhappy with the city’s interference. He said he had been putting forth efforts to clean the property himself, but he is disabled and the process was slow.

The city sent Brown formal notice in February that the property had to be cleaned, which primarily meant mowed and metal or other objects had to be moved 150 feet from the road. Brown said he began to clean the property himself about six months ago. While he does not live at the property full time, instead residing in Bay St. Louis most of the days of the week, he does stay there on the weekends.

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Brown claims he will file suit against the city for coming on his property and finishing the cleanup.

Attempts to get Brown to clean up his property go back seven years, said Public Works Director Eric Morris. Morris said the cleanup did not involve removing any of the metal on the property. He said that instead the city moved those items 150 feet from the road and used city personnel and machinery to cut the grass, cut down trees and finish what Brown started six months ago. Brown contests that while the city did leave his large iron beams and other large metal items, the city took an old tire machine and some sheet metal off his property.

Morris said Brown was given several extensions from the February notice due to his initial efforts to clean the property, but when it appeared Brown’s efforts had ceased, the city moved in to finish the job.

“We’ve been as patient with him as we could have while he was showing progress,” Morris said. “Then it came to a point where he felt like it was clean but it was not up to our standards.”