ON YOUR SIDE: Former governor's home now a neighborhood eyesore

Reported by: Joe Hart
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Updated: 10/28/2013 7:23 pm
CARSON CITY, Nev. (KRNV & MyNews4.com) - The former home of Nevada Governor John Jones is nestled in the heart of Carson City's historic district.  There's even a blue line painted on the sidewalk to guide visitors who come here to take in the sights.  It's an area known for its tree lined streets and beautifully restored turn of the century homes.   Except for one :

"It's pretty dirty inside, it's dilapidated, and there's a lot of animal feces." said neighbor Sherry Mclaughlin.

Mclaughlin said she's fed up with the mess and the mice:

"I caught 19 last weekend," she told us.

The home is abandoned and has been in default for months.   The front yard is full of over grown shrubs.  The backyard is littered with an old Volkswagen, tires and some unfinished additions to the house.

And neighbors say worse than all of that, is the smell.

"When it rains  you smell urine.  That's what the house is filled with." said another neighbor, Stephanie Shefrin, who lives right across the street.
It's a far cry from the days when Nevada's eighth governor proudly called the house home.

Back in 1895 the house at 603 West Robinson Street was the governor's mansion.

Neighbors say it deserves better treatment than its getting.

"No one seems to be able to get anybody to clean this up," said Sherry Mclaughlin.

So we went to the Carson City Planning Department to find out what is being done to clean up the house and surrounding property.

"We're doing everything we can at this point," said Lee Plemel with the planning department.

Plemel says the owner of the home, Margaret Spears, first received a misdemeanor citation in august of 2012 and a one thousand dollar fine.

15 months later,  the fine hasn't been paid and the house is still a mess.

Plemel says since the home is not considered a public health hazard, the city's hands are tied.

"We don't have the ability to just go right on the property and take care of the issue.  We have to go through the court process," he said.

Plemel says they will continue to work with the owner and hope for some voluntary cooperation in order to restore some of the pride and luster to a home with a rich history but a somewhat frightening future.

Again, the owner, who we were not able to track down, did receive a misdemeanor citation and you can go to jail for that.  But the court process is playing out very slowly in this case.  News 4 contacted the Carson City District Attorney's Office to find out what they're doing to enforce the law in this case, but they would not answer any questions for our story, saying it is an open investigation.

The city is hopeful someone may come along and buy the house.   But for now, they will do what they can to try to get the property owner to clean it up.

4 Comment(s)
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Here are the most recent story comments.View All

jose mariachi - 6/7/2014 6:36 AM
0 Votes
UPDATE 2014. New Owner. Major construction going on.

Kramer - 10/29/2013 5:37 PM
0 Votes
as bad as the King's Inn?

Kramer - 10/29/2013 5:37 PM
0 Votes
just don't step in it!

monterey - 10/28/2013 9:35 PM
0 Votes
The city needs to step it up!

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