Town demolishes 200th zombie house

On Wednesday, June 13, Supervisor Ed Romaine (second from right) was joined by (left to right) Councilman Neil Foley; Councilman Michael Loguercio and Councilwoman Jane Bonner to mark the 200th Zombie House demolition during his initiative to clean up neighborhoods across Brookhaven Town. According to a recent independent engineer’s report, the house, located at 2 Washington Carver Drive in Coram and vacant for more than five years, was in “an advanced stage of deterioration” and determined to be unsafe. The Town has already demolished 26 Zombie Houses in 2018.

The house was demolished by employees from the Town’s Department of Recycling and Sustainable Materials Management in accordance with Chapter 73 of the Town Code which provides a “fast track” to rid neighborhoods of unsafe structures. The cost of demolition and debris removal is the responsibility of the property owner, and the Town places a lien on the property that is then placed on the tax bill. The County reimburses the Town and then they collect the money from the property owner.

Supervisor Romaine said, “I am proud to mark this as our two-hundredth demolition, but our work is far from being done. While there are hundreds of vacant and abandoned houses in the Town, many of them are in decent shape and could be made habitable again. I will continue to work with all levels of government and the private sector to develop a grant program that will help us renovate these houses for veterans and first-time home buyers.”

Councilwoman Bonner said, “This house was in the middle of a nice neighborhood where people are working hard to raise their children and realize the American Dream. I support the Supervisor’s efforts to rehabilitate vacant houses instead of demolishing them and I will do everything I can to help make that happen.”

Councilman Loguercio said, “It’s important that we continue to remove houses like this from our community. They create so many problems, including criminal activity and squatters, as well as lowering the value of the properties that surround it. Thanks to the Town’s Recycling and Sustainable Materials Management Department for another job well done.”

Councilman Neil Foley said, “This is another example of the Town of Brookhaven’s commitment to improve the quality of life in every neighborhood. It’s a great day for the residents who have lived with this dangerous eyesore for too many years.  I ask that people report vacant and abandoned houses to the Town and we will work to have them removed.” 

To report a vacant house, go to www.brookhavenny.gov, or call 631-451-TOWN (8696).

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