Create a Website Account - Manage notification subscriptions, save form progress and more.
Name any place, and more than likely, and you'll find abandoned or dilapidated houses. Unfortunately, the Village of Park Forest has its fair share of abandoned or run-down homes.
However, the Village's code enforcement manager Jerry Martin said his department is proactively doing things to eliminate the eyesores.
"In the last 12 months, the Village has filed 75 abandonment cases. One of the realities is that these cases can take time to proceed through the court system," Martin said. "We expect most of these cases to be resolved in the next several months."
Martin said the Village has been using the abandonment process to address abandoned structures in the Village. He added it requires the attorneys representing a government agency to file a court case that petitions the court to declare a structure as abandoned.
Afterward, the court requires the attorneys to serve notice to the owners of record and interested parties. Part of serving notice requires publication in a local newspaper that an abandonment case has been filed and posting a notice about the court case to the front of the abandoned property.
Martin said most of the abandonment cases in the Village are being addressed through a partnership with the Village and the South Suburban Land Bank and Development Authority (SSLBDA.)
"It's great that the Village partners with SSLBDA," Martin said. "A benefit of partnering with the SSLBDA is that they cover all legal costs."
Martin said once these cases are resolved, the Village can move forward and do what’s necessary to rid the community of abandoned and run-down homes.