Tifton organizes committee to tackle property blight - WALB.com, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

Tifton organizes committee to tackle property blight

Private Property signs posted on a vacant, overgrown lot (Source: WALB) Private Property signs posted on a vacant, overgrown lot (Source: WALB)
Dilapidated home on Ridge Avenue (Source: WALB) Dilapidated home on Ridge Avenue (Source: WALB)
Peggy Shuman, Tifton Resident (Source: WALB) Peggy Shuman, Tifton Resident (Source: WALB)
Jack Folk, Tifton District 2 City Councilman (Source: WALB) Jack Folk, Tifton District 2 City Councilman (Source: WALB)
Shuman's home she and her husband are working to restore (Source: WALB) Shuman's home she and her husband are working to restore (Source: WALB)
TIFTON, GA (WALB) -

There's a new push to clean up eyesores across the city of Tifton.

City council members are working right now to organize a new fight the blight committee.

Peggy Shuman is a Tifton resident who moved to the area with her husband earlier this year. But her family has owned the three properties on Ridge Avenue off Highway 82 for years.

One of Shuman's former homes has seen better days and she said she's looking into tearing it down.

As for the other two properties, she and her husband are hoping to give them a facelift.

However, Shuman worries that not everyone is as handy as she and her husband and that may be contributing to blight across the city.

"For some homeowners, it's very expensive to get property renovated, especially if you can't do the work yourself," explained Shuman. 

Tifton District 2 City Councilman Jack Folk is one of the volunteers on the committee. 

He said the committee is trying to streamline and strengthen the process of how to take care of blighted properties. 

"People think when you're talking about cleaning up, you're talking about picking up litter, yard debris, that kind of thing. But a bigger problem is dilapidated houses, unsafe structures," said Folk.

In addition to working with owners, Folk wants to create a safer environment since some areas can be a place for crime. 

"You have drug activity and you have other illegal activity that they just draw. And in addition to that these structures don't help the property values," explained Folk.

By working to refurbish the properties that need a lot of work, Shuman is hopeful. 

"We hope that it can start turning the neighborhood back around again," Shuman said.

Now the committee has not chosen specific properties yet, but Folk said he's ready for the committee to begin working together immediately. 

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