The judge gives the owner 10 days to clean the yard | New
SALEM, NH – Boxes stacked 5 feet high in the back yard at 45 Maclarnon Road are coming out.
A judge gave owner Michael Bates 10 days to remove the thousands of broken printers and other debris on Monday.
“We have to clean it up because spring is coming and there are rats living there,” neighbor John Manning said on Tuesday.
Manning lives a few doors down from the property and he said he saw more and more rats “running around in the yard” with the warmer weather.
“And we don’t need that with all the kids running around and playing outside,” he said.
For about a year, neighbors have been complaining about the site to municipal authorities. According to neighbors, the house has been vacant for months.
“I hope we are nearing the end of this process and clean it up as soon as possible,” said Brian Lockard, Salem’s health manager, on Tuesday.
Bates said he had tried to work with the city to resolve the situation.
Debris cannot be taken to the municipal landfill because it cannot accommodate so many printers, according to Lockard.
“It’s part of my responsibility. I’ve done everything to fix this problem,” Bates wrote to the Eagle-Tribune on Tuesday. “I donated bobcats, workers and more. I asked the city if they could help me with the trash and a place to dispose. They didn’t want to “work with me,” meaning if they do, they have to do it there. “
After media coverage on the property, Bates received an offer to purchase from someone who planned to clean it up immediately, he said.
However, that offer failed last Friday, according to Bates, as the property is linked to his divorce.
“Because, again, not everything is my property,” Bates wrote. “I needed it signed.”
Bates said he was still working to get help cleaning up the property.
“The city will or won’t,” Bates wrote. “Ultimately it will be cleaned up. I also told (health worker) Brian (Lockard) and (building manager) Jeff (Emanuelson) that if the property is foreclosed, or if something happens where the city is not getting their money, I will do everything in my power to make the whole city back. It is not their job or their responsibility to do so. “
There are a few steps in the property cleanup process – municipal authorities need to hire a contractor to do the work. Lockard is currently looking for estimates to complete the cleanup, which range from $ 13,000 to $ 18,000, he said.
“Then I have to discuss it with the CEO and we have to get approval,” from the board, Lockard said. “We need to get approval because we don’t have money budgeted for this type of problem.”
The city can then put a lien on the house in order to collect what the city is spending on cleaning.
Bates acquired the printers and the broken boxes through his old liquidation business, he said in a previous interview. He abruptly shut down the business and had no other place to store the printers, he said.
Neighboring owners complained to the city as early as April 2018 about the boxes. Several city offices – including the Planning Bureau and the Fire Department – have asked Bates to clean up the property to no avail. In November 2018, the city took the matter to court to have a judge order the property to be cleaned up.
At the first hearing on January 11, the judge gave Bates three months to clean up his yard. At the March 12 hearing, the judge gave Bates an extra month to clean up the yard. A hearing scheduled for April 15 has been postponed to Monday due to the potential sale.