Blight battle brewing in Islip

The Town of Islip has proposed a law aimed at pressuring out-of-state banks and mortgage companies to clean up dilapidated foreclosed homes that they own.Jose

CENTRAL ISLIP - The Town of Islip has proposed a law aimed at pressuring out-of-state banks and mortgage companies to clean up dilapidated foreclosed homes that they own.

Jose Gonzalez, of Central Islip, says the presence of multiple blighted homes on Sycamore Street in his neighborhood has been hurting the residents' quality of life and causing vermin infestations.

Nancy Manfredonia, of the Central Islip Civic Council, lobbied the Town of Islip to fight blight because it negatively impacts property values.

The proposed legislation creates a points system to define blight offenses, which include property attracting illegal activity, posing a fire risk or causing vermin infestation. If a property accumulates 100 points or more, the town will slap a fee on that property's tax bills; $2,500 for residential properties and $5,000 for commercial properties.

The town says hitting banks and mortgage companies in their bottom lines will get them to clean up blighted homes.

Islip town officials will vote on the proposed law following a public hearing Jan. 25.

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