A woman from the north end of Carmi says she and her husband cannot go outdoors because of the stench of rotting meat wafting from an abandoned house in her neighborhood. Jean Michels appeared at the August 6 meeting of the Carmi City Council wanting to know what can be done about the dilapidated house in the 800 block of North Sixth Street. “The front door is standing wide open,” Michels said. “People have gone in there, taken what they wanted, and left rotten meat in a freezer. My husband has developed health problems and can't go outside now because of the stink.”
Mayor Jeff Pollard said he understood the woman's frustration about the home which is owned by the estate of the late Homer Yates. “We are actually trying to find out who is in charge of Mr. Yates' estate,” Mayor Pollard said. “There's just not a lot we can do until we know who to contact.” Mr. Yates, a U.S. Army veteran of the Korean War, died in September of last year. He was 88. Mrs. Michels asked if perhaps the police or someone from the city could at least secure the front door of the house to help keep the smell inside. Police Chief Jason Carter shook his head no. Mayor Pollard did say the city is working to notify the owners of a boarded up house in the same neighborhood in an effort to have that property repaired or demolished. City officials reassured Mrs. Michels that city officials are still working to find a solution to both problems.
FARM TO TABLE EVENT PLANNED
Patrick Scates addressed the Carmi City Council, gaining approval to close a section of South Main Cross Street on October 10 for a Farm to Table dining event. The event will coincide with the annual Carmi Corn Days celebration. “The purpose of this event is to promote agriculture in our community,” Scates said. “Proceeds from the event will be donated to local programs like the FFA and 4-H.” Scates added that the event will mirror a similar event held annually in Knox County, Illinois where area farmers donate meat, produce and other food items for the outdoor venue. “I expect some of the food will be prepared in the Farm Bureau kitchen, some catering may also be possible,” Scates said. “Again, the event is to promote the importance of agriculture.” Aldermen unanimously approved closing South Main Cross Street from 5 – 10 pm on October 10.
There was much discussion but no action on what to do about parking issues and traffic congestion along a section of Church Street in Carmi. Fourth Ward Alderman James Totten said the situation amounts to “an accident waiting to happen.” Some suggested putting up “Congested Area” or “Slow Children” signs in the area. Police Chief Jason Carter the signs could could actually create a liability issue for the city. Adding a stop sign in the area as well as reducing the speed limit in the area from 25 to 20 mph was also discouraged. In the end, aldermen noted there are many areas around the city where there are parking problems and traffic congestion. “Folks just need to use common sense when driving,” one alderman noted. The only action taken following the discussion was to order the repainting of curbs in the area to clearly identify no parking areas.
Work is underway to make major improvements and repairs to the municipal tennis courts at Bradshaw Park. The courts are receiving a new blacktop surface and will be striped. Because of the high cost of adding a true tennis court surface paint, the courts will be simply striped in white paint this year. A surface coat could be added next year, city officials said.
For more of this story subscribe now!