MILLINOCKET – Millinocket residents are in disagreement over an open letter written in the town’s local paper last week. In it, the town’s code enforcement officer cracked down on property owners with overgrown and unkept lawns.
Tall grass and weeds occupy the lawns of some homes in Millinocket, and now officials are trying to bring this growing problem to a stop.
“The town has started to show signs of people…being lax at maintaining their properties,” said Millinocket Code Enforcement Officer Richard Angotti.
It prompted him to write an open letter in the Lincoln and Katahdin Region newspaper, asking residents to maintain their yards and properties.
In the letter he cites Millinocket’s property maintenance ordinance which says properties must be “free from weeds or plant growth in excess of 10 inches”. The rule isn’t anything new but Angotti says it needs to be better enforced.
“We want to turn Millinocket around, and the only way we’re going to turn Millinocket around is if everybody does their part to maintain their property,” said Angotti.
Multiple homeowners we spoke with said town leaders should be focused on other issues such as drug use. Others agree with Angotti.
“When the lawns get kind of out of control it looks like people don’t care about their town, they don’t care about their residences and I think it’s an important statement of pride in your town,” said Millinocket resident Marsha Donahue.
Residents also aren’t allowed to have more than one unregistered vehicle on their property. Angotti understands some may be frustrated about it but says it’s a part of his job.
“I have to follow the code,” he said. “That’s what I was given, that’s what the council hired me for, the manager hired me for, was to uphold the code for the town of Millinocket.”
Residents still have time to get their properties up to code but Angotti says the town will have to take further action if the problem persists.