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Longtime eyesore in Sarpy County gets attention

Published: Mar. 29, 2021 at 10:46 PM CDT
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SARPY COUNTY, Neb. (WOWT) - Now that yards are starting to green up, several neighbors are angry that weeds will spring up in a Sarpy County eyesore.

Her grandson doesn’t leave the patio because Karen Mardi worries the fence won’t keep out visitors from the abandoned property next door.

“Snakes and mice coming through over here and we got a little 4-year-old sweet grandson that I don’t feel comfortable letting him sit out here and play,” said neighbor Mardi.

The woman still listed as owner of the house moved out 18 months ago and the Sarpy County Register of Deeds says the mortgage went into default more than a year ago. Meanwhile, neighbors say nothing has been done to clean up the backyard they see as hazardous.

Neighbor Jeff McCue said, “Kids and stuff may want to get back in there and lord knows what they’ll get into. There’s a lot of junk as you can see.”

That could become a hidden danger soon. The winter has knocked down the backyard vegetation and only a few weeds remain standing.

Neighbors worry with spring coming that the eyesore will grow again. Photos of the same yard from last summer show their concerns outside and neighbors say police and utility workers warned of broken pipes inside.

Neighbor Bill Wolf said, “I don’t want it in my neighborhood, you wouldn’t want it in your neighborhood. Let’s have somebody come do something.”

The property falls under La Vista’s jurisdiction and a record search uncovered the bank holding the mortgage.

La Vista Police Capt. D.J. Barcal said, “Bear with us, the code enforcement officer has been working on it and he understands there are serious concerns and health concerns, and working with the bank, hopefully, they’ll get the property cleaned up.”

When remains a concern for neighbors going into a second weed growing season.

“I don’t want to have to hold my breath. I want to know that they’re going to take care of this,” said Mardi.

Neighbors hope the house can be restored into a home for a family willing to invest their nest egg.

U.S. Bank holds the mortgage but a spokesperson says the lender doesn’t currently own the property. Now, it’s been made aware of the situation, U.S. Bank will work with La Vista officials to investigate the issue.

In other cases like this, 6 News found foreclosures have been delayed during the pandemic.

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