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Two years on, house hulk a problem for neighbors


Heidi Bradeen and 2-year-old daughter Jovanna, show what they have to view next door to them at 611 Holly Street. The house burned down about two years ago and the property still has not been cleaned up. -- Roger S. Lucas photo

A resident on Holly Street complained to the Coulee Dam council last week about a burned out house next to her property and the fact that no one is doing anything to clean it up.

Heidi Bradeen, of 609 Holly, lives next door to a structure that burned in September, 2012.

"On warm days the smell is so bad we have to stay inside our house," Bradeen said Thursday.

Mayor Greg Wilder responded to Bradeen's problem and stated that the property could come up in a tax sale sometime soon, and that the town might be able to bid on it.

The town tried to solve the problem of the burned structure earlier and had advertised for bids to tear the structure down and clean up the property. The town's intent was to then slap a lien on the place and recover its funds when the property eventually sold.

Only one bid was received, and that was for about $23,000, much more than the property was worth.

The owner of the property, who lives elsewhere, doesn't want anything to do with it and is letting the taxes build up until Okanogan County eventually steps in and takes over the property for outstanding taxes.

Meanwhile the burned out home is an eyesore and a problem for neighbors and the town.

Bradeen said that someone just recently set fire to the tall grass on the property and flames burned a tree in the yard.

"A neighbor heard a bang and then a car racing away," Bradeen stated. That was early in the morning July19.

Two volunteer firemen raced to the firehall and returned with light trucks and put the fire out.

It was reported to mayor Wilder at the meeting that all the pumper trucks were out on range fires. He responded and noted that he had been assured that the town would be covered and said he would look into that.

Bradeen asked the town to clean up branches that she had cut off of the burned tree and placed at curbside. Mayor Wilder assured her that the town crew would pick up the branches.

Meanwhile the burned out house is an eyesore for residents and a public relations problem for the town.

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