• Last modified 217 days ago (Oct. 18, 2023)


'I'm broke!' But house must be fixed or razed

Staff writer

The son of an elderly woman who owns derelict property at 202 Miller St. asked Marion City Council members Monday for six months to finish repairing the property.

The city has been demanding since November that the property be repaired or the house would be demolished.

Donald Wilson, whose 75-year-old mother, Delilah Belshe, owns the house, said he’s been working to comply with the city’s demands but that he’s spent more than $1,000 taking materials to the county transfer station.

His mother is on Social Security and they “are broke,” he said.

“I’m not sure what the issue really is,” he said.

City inspector James Masters told the council that a cistern needed to be filled in, steps were decayed and unsafe, and other work needed to be done.

Councilman Zach Collett asked how much more time Wilson needed. That’s when Wilson asked for six months.

Collett said it would take time for the city to get bids to demolish the house and the city would need to give a demolition company up to three months to tear down the house.

Council members voted to give contractors until Dec. 27 to submit bids and told Wilson to give council members another report on that day.

If he has made sufficient progress on the work, the council could reject all bids.

Masters reported that he had difficulty reaching Wilson because Wilson had been refusing to pick up registered letters sent to him.

Wilson contends that a decaying stairway is not used because to door it leads to on the house’s second floor has been screwed shut.

Masters said a tenant with a child recently moved into the house.

Last modified Oct. 18, 2023