In January, Erie City Council approved an ordinance to charge a $300 registration fee to owners of unoccupied properties every six months. If owners don’t register their properties, they will be fined.
“Most of the cities in Alleghany County have it from various classes and townships, and Redding just passed it as well, so this is something that has gained in popularity. As a registration fee, it has its particular advantages. As long as we’re providing the services on it, then it’s justified,” said Chuck Nelson, Erie City Council president.
Nelson added that the goal is to get city property owners to take action on the blight because their vacant properties drive down home values in the neighborhood.
City officials said the benefit of registration is knowing who is responsible for the property.