By MARY ANN GREIER
SALEM - The Rules & Ordinances Committee of City Council agreed Tuesday to recommend vacating several platted lots and portions of two platted streets on vacant land between Benton Road and the railroad tracks.
The streets, known as Ohio Boulevard and Jefferson Avenue, exist on paper only and were never built and the 36 lots in question were part of Salem Heights 4th Addition and weren't developed.
The question will now go to city council on whether to approve the vacation. The Salem Planning Commission had already taken action to recommend approval of the vacation in November.
Councilman Clyde Brown, who serves on the committee, inquired why they were being asked to vacate the plat now.
City Planning and Zoning Officer Patrick Morrissey said the new owner of the property made the request, noting they're trying to market the area.
"So there's a chance something might develop out there," Brown said.
Committee Chairman Councilman Rick Drummond asked Morrissey if he had heard any comments from the public that the property should not be vacated. He had not received any comments or inquiries about the proposed vacation.
The next city council meeting is 7 p.m. Jan. 15. A public hearing will be held at 6:45 p.m. prior to the meeting, regarding bonds being sought through the city by Salem Community Hospital for the patient bed tower construction project.
Mayor John Berlin announced previously that he would deliver his state of the city address at the meeting on Jan. 15.