Herkimer, N.Y. - Herkimer Mayor Tony Brindisi is hoping things will finally soon change when it comes to the former Quackenbush properties on N. Prospect St.. He says they've have sat vacant for the past 12 years and are now not only an eyesore but also are now a potential danger.
Brindisi says the Herkimer County Industrial Development Agency (IDA) owns the properties because back in the 1980's the IDA allowed the former owner, H.R. Quackenbush, to not pay taxes, and for that to happen, the deed to the properties had to be put in the name of the IDA.
Just this month the state has come in and put up big X's on each of the three buildings, along with an order stating that the buildings are in violation of state codes, citing unsecured doors, openings and windows in all three buildings as well as combustible materials inside.
So why is the state doing this instead of the village? Well, that's the heart of the matter.
Quackenbush filed for bankruptcy in 2005 and Brindisi says ever since the properties have just sat that to decay. He says in recent years the village has tried to get the IDA to clean the site up, but the IDA has claimed it doesn't really own the properties, only in name only.
A Supreme Court judge has ruled that the Herkimer County IDA does own the properties and also has to pay the village a whopping 2.3 million dollars in back water bills. and the state is now responsible for dealing with any codes violations on the properties.
IDA Executive Director John Piseck tells News Channel 2 the IDA does not own the property and is appealing the Supreme Court decision, but cannot comment any further because of the pending litigation.
No time table has been set for the appeal to be heard.
But for now, big X's can be seen on each of the three buildings and those X's may be up for a while, depending on how long this appeal process takes.
Brindisi is hoping that the appeal will be denied and the IDA will finally have to clean up the properties or tear them down.
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