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Canfield residents voice concerns over Flower Mill property



Published: Sat, November 5, 2011 @ 12:01 a.m.

By Elise Franco

efranco@vindy.com

CANFIELD

Township officials know that without the help of other Mahoning County agencies they’ll get only so far in their efforts to clean up the old Flower Mill — a property neighbors call an eyesore.

Residents who live around the mill, at 4575 S. Canfield Niles Road, have asked for weeks what can be done to clean up some of the mess on the property.

Several people voiced concerns at an Oct. 26 trustees meeting about the large, dilapidated building, high weeds and piles of street grindings on the property.

Zoning Inspector Dave Morrison said a citation was issued Oct. 28 regarding the dozens of street-grinding piles dumped at the front of the property in August.

“The citation is for stockpiling the grindings,” Morrison said. “They’re given a reasonable amount of time — in this case, 30 days — to remove or relocate the material.”

Morrison said there has to be a 4- to 6-foot barrier between the piles and the residential development across the street. He corresponded through email with the property owner’s partner, Jim Steiner. “He wasn’t happy about the citation, and at this point I don’t know if they will comply within 30 days.”

Property owner Shari Francis declined to comment. Her attorney Rob Bouffard of Boardman didn’t return calls for comment.

Trustee Marie Cartwright said previously that after Francis purchased the land several years ago, Steiner tried to have it rezoned from agricultural to industrial to open a towing business there, but his request was denied by the zoning board.

Morrison said rezoning the property in that way would be considered spot zoning, which he knew residents didn’t support.

“I suggested they apply for a conditional-use zoning variance so that the land would revert back to agricultural when they were done,” he said. “To my knowledge, they haven’t done that yet.”

Mary-Helen Smith, county board of health environmental health director, said Steiner isn’t violating any board of health regulations.

She said because the grindings were “processed into a usable construction material,” no permit was required to dump them on the land, and there’s no time limit on how long they can remain there.

“The property owner filled out a notice of intent,” she said. “But they’re not required to obtain a permit because they meet the exemption.”

Morrison said he’s also spoken with Steiner several times about high weeds growing along the property. He said the weeds were sprayed and have since been cut down.

But those aren’t the only issues residents have with the five-acre property.

Besides the greenhouse, two other structures sit on the land — an occupied home at the back of the property, and a smaller, vacant house that Trustee Martha Zarlenga said could have structural problems.

Morrison said the only way to deem the structure a nuisance and eventually have it torn down is to have either the health department or building inspector determine that it’s uninhabitable.

Zarlenga said she’s spoken with the Mahoning County Board of Health and is trying to work with the county building inspector and sanitary engineer’s office to see if the vacant structure can be condemned.

“Because of the condition of the house there, it hasn’t been lived in for years. ... There’s all kind of problems with the foundation, and neighbors are concerned about animals getting in,” she said.

Smith said an inspector checked the structure twice — most recently Oct. 28.

Zarlenga said she’s still waiting to hear back from the county building inspector and sanitary engineer’s office on routes they may be able to take.

Smith said that for the health department to deem a structure a public-health nuisance, it has to show rodent harborage.

“We aren’t structural inspectors, so we look at it from a public-health perspective,” she said. “We would have the ability to abate if we find a combination of rodent harborage, standing water and a food source.

“Although we saw few gaps, there’s no evidence of any rodents. From a health and hygiene perspective, the structure is reasonably weather-tight and rodent-proof.”


Comments

1ghostofjohnyoung(163 comments)posted 3 years ago

What a bunch of busy body pain the a%% busy bodies.

Oh some high weeds..

What in the world are "piles of street grindings"?

Street grindings?

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2ytownsteelman(631 comments)posted 3 years ago

It is asphalt that has been removed from roads. I am sure you have seen the big machines that grind up the asphalt and leave a grooved surface that is later repaved. Might not see that too much in Youngstown though, they hardly ever find time to actually pave streets anymore. Grindings are an excellent material for a parking lot or driveway, they pack down nice and hard.

This is just a bunch of busy bodies with nothing better to do than harass their neighbor.

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3Freeatlast(1991 comments)posted 3 years ago

looks awful . The owner should clean it up .

Suggest removal:

4Stan(9923 comments)posted 3 years ago

This is an excellent place to build some low income housing . That area doesn't have any . I believe that there are grant monies available .

Suggest removal:

5MLC75(568 comments)posted 3 years ago

The place looks terrible.I'm sure no one posting here,would want to live next door to this mess.It is a major eye sore for community.

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6pacer(68 comments)posted 3 years ago

Sounds like some of the people that moved in the neighborhood across the street now want to make trouble for their neighbors. If they don't like it they should move. Or maybe some builder wants the property and has some friends helping him by complaining. Either way, if you don't like it, MOVE OUT.

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7whitesabbath(738 comments)posted 3 years ago

Would it hurt to cut the weeds down or I imagine thats beneath these clowns.

Next time you see a front end-loader go by have them level the pile.

I think somebody wants to buy that property. Look at the pictures , bunch of sniveling, whinning, prunes.

Run to California and become a raisin.

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8YtownParent(340 comments)posted 3 years ago

My problem isn't that they are complaining about it nor that they want something done about it, but that they are over reaching and wasting county resources in "trying to see if the structure can be condemned". There are dozens of structures in the rest of the county (Austintown, Boardman, Youngstown etc.) that are visibly uninhabitable. The county board of health hasn't inspected them yet, but they can make room and time to get out to Canfield twice to check a structure that has no health issues. They need to wait their turn like everyone else.

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9BenitaDrugs(42 comments)posted 3 years ago

That's right, what right do these people have to complain about conditions that effect their lives. They should just shut up and mind their own business. If the owner of that property decides to start dumping chicken feces or old tires, oh well, just live with it. I mean these people live in Canfield, the Hamptons of Mahoning county. They should learn to live with squalor like the rest of us.
Sorry for my sarcasm.

Suggest removal:

10Bplus(103 comments)posted 3 years ago

Who cares? I hope these people realize how retarded they look in the picture the vindy took. More importantly, I hope they stop whining about this meaningless crap. Go eat some Cracker Barrel and attend Evangelical church...whatever it is these khaki wearing jagoffs do.

@Losersneverwin- You compose sentences like a first grader in LD class.

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11lumper(284 comments)posted 3 years ago

why hasn't anyone hired mr. betras ?

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12Freeatlast(1991 comments)posted 3 years ago

Keep up the good fight . You do not want to become the next Boardman . Just look what we have become.
Good luck in stopping this kind of stuff

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13DeepThoughts(7 comments)posted 3 years ago

Sounds like a lot of you live in dumpy neighborhoods and are jealous of those that don't. Maybe your apathy is why your neighborhood is a dump?

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14wineywoman(78 comments)posted 3 years ago

DeepThoughts; Amen to that!! That's called envy where I come from. Just because we WILL NOT allow our city to become run down and blighted, doesn't mean we're "stuck up." We want to live in decent surroundings, and pay a price for the privilege. We have the right to ask our neighbors to do likewise.

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15walter_sobchak(1950 comments)posted 3 years ago

GTX66,
You are an idiot. When I moved to Canfield, the business on this property was still operating and was not a problem. But, over the last few years, the place has been permitted to become very rundown and is, indeed, an eyesore. So, your justification of this is because the south side of Youngstown has become a sh!thole, the people of Canfield should not be upset about this. I invite you to drive by the property for yourself. And, when you do, please drive north on 46 from the green at 45mph so that you can express your outrage to the CPD over the "haughtiness" of Canfield residents.

Suggest removal:


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