City wins case against Taraba

By: 
Wade Young, wade@montgomerymnnews.com

A judge ruled the abandoned property at 100 First Street South will be razed by either the property owner or the City of Montgomery. (Messenger file photo)

Le Sueur County District Court has ordered the abandoned and dilapidated property at 100 First Street South to be razed.

The court ruled in favor of the City of Montgomery on July 16. Judge Patrick Goggins is ordering Taraba to vacate and remove all personal possessions from the property by Friday, July 30, 2021.

Taraba is also ordered, by the same date, to raze the building, remove all building debris from the site, dispose of it in a legally appropriate manner, and bring the basement back to grade.

Should Taraba not comply with the judge’s order, the property becomes the city’s on July 31, 2021.

Goggins is also forcing Taraba to pay all of the city’s costs related to the project, including attorney’s fees. According to City Administrator Brian Heck, the amount is just over $72,000.

“Because we have a judgment, the amount is, as I understand it, a lien placed on this real property,” Heck stated.

Goggins heard testimony in a trial on June 14 from the city officials who want the building taken down because it’s been deemed hazardous. He also heard from Taraba’s attorney-in-fact, Francis Meger why the building should remain.

Heck recounted the fire on July 29, 2020, at Taraba’s property at 104 First Street, which spread to 102 First Street owned by Jeff and Maureen Franek. That property butted up to Taraba’s 100 First Street property.

Heck answered questions about how he, Building Inspector Cory Block, and the fire department went into the 100 Free Street building after the fire, saw the basement was full of water and that the property was...

To see more on this story pick up the July 29, 2021 print edition of the Montgomery Messenger. 

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