The Daily Item, Sunbury, PA

Northumberland County

March 25, 2013

Blight fight takes to streets of Sunbury

SUNBURY — SUNBURY - Sunbury Mayor David Persing announced Phase II in his blight removal plan at Monday’s city council meeting.

“This will be a much more proactive effort to address properties and try to save them from reaching the blight guidelines which will lead to demolition of city acquisition,” he said.

“This will be enforced under the Sunbury Redevelopment Authority and will be under the city rules and regulations within our code office.”

Persing voted with Councilman Todd Snyder, Joe Bartello and Kevin Troup to hire a part-time employee to help in the code department, Councilman Jim Eister voted against the 15-20 hour position.

Persing explained he wants the code department to work hand-in-hand with the redevelopment authority.

“Through the help of the mayor’s office we will create a listing of every property within the city of Sunbury and maintain that listing,” Persing said.

“There will be walk-by inspections of every property on the list and documentation of all blight issues only will be noted. This will be a city-wide listing and a city-wide enforcement.”

Persing said any home or property not up to par will receive notification.

“We will correspond through letters, written deadlines and fines if needed,” Persing said.

“These issues will include bad sidewalks, unsafe structures on property and outside maintenance issues.”

Persing said he will continue to stay on top of the blighted properties project and also announced a new home permit was purchased for new construction on Walnut Street.

“We just don’t want to tear down building,” he said. “We want the ones people just walk away from and we will continue to be proactive in that effort.”

Persing said the city has at least 25 properties in the Northumberland County Court system waiting for a judge to rule on whether or not the city can take control of the homes.


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