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City Council passes resolution ordering demolition of two motels located on Airport Drive

Hannah Grover
Farmington Daily Times
The Farmington Fire Department investigates a blaze at the Sage Motel at the intersection of Glade Lane and Airport Drive in this file photo.

AZTEC — The Farmington City Council unanimously passed a resolution ordering the owners of two motels on Airport Drive to demolish the buildings and remove the rubbish and debris from the properties.

These two properties are the Sage Motel at 301 Airport Drive and Sage North Motel at 401 Airport Drive.

During the City Council meeting on Aug. 25, City Attorney Jennifer Breakell told the councilors that the buildings are in a state of disrepair and are at risk of caving in on themselves. First responders receive regular calls for service at the locations. These calls have included fire, narcotics and trespassing.

The city has been trying to get the properties taken care of for years. The last contact the code compliance department had with the owners, who live out of state, was in October of last year.

In June, after being contacted by the fire department, officials say the owners said they would clean up the property, but that has not yet happened.

The property owners will have 10 days to appeal the resolution in district court.

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If the owners do not clean up the property, the city will either hire a contractor or use city crews to demolish the buildings and remove the debris.

This will cost an estimated $125,000 to $150,000, City Manager Rob Mayes said. The city would then place a lien on the property to recoup those costs.

If the lien is not paid within five years, the city could foreclose on the property. That would force the sale of the two parcels and the city would recoup the costs in that manner.

“We don’t take lightly anything that in a sense violates the rights of a property owner,” Mayes said.

He said the vast majority of code compliance cases in the city do not come close to justifying the type of action the council approved on Aug. 25.

“It’s not just that it’s an eyesore,” said Councilor Linda Rodgers. “It is a danger to our public servants.”

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Hannah Grover covers government for The Daily Times. She can be reached at 505-564-4652 or via email at hgrover@daily-times.com.

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