Updated: Tuesday, 05 Feb 2013, 8:32 PM EST
Published : Tuesday, 05 Feb 2013, 7:25 PM EST
NORWICH, Conn. (WTNH) -- The City of Norwich will be spending $20 thousand taxpayer dollars to clean up debris from a fire back in March because the owners seem to have disappeared.
The fire at this Oak Street home was so intense the building next door was also destroyed. Now nearly a year later that property is cleaned up but this one remains a mess.
"They should have cleaned up. Somebody should have clean it up. It shouldn't have just been sitting here," said Joshua Jakubowski of Norwich.
"It's a mess they should have cleaned it up the owners they should have just left it there," said Jennifer Akesson of Norwich.
We wanted to find out what the city is doing about.
"We're going to be aggressive. We're going to take care of the issue and clean up the city," said Ed Martin, Blight Officer.
Martin says the city will pay for the $20,000 clean up and then put a lien on the property. He says at first owner Yuhua Yu was going to rebuild, even showed him the $130,000 insurance check but then nothing happened.
"And for you is it frustrating when owners don't take responsibility like this," asked News 8's Tina Detelj.
"Oh absolutely that just bugs the heck out of me, I just can't stand it," said Martin.
Not only is this a mess but it's also dangerous. The pieces of wood have rusty nails sticking out of them and the property itself has become a dumping ground for others in the city.
News 8 tried to track down the owner ourselves. We found out Yu is from Flushing, New York. That's the address listed with the city but Martin says she may have taken the insurance money and ran.
"And it's changed names a few times to relatives names. So it was like chasing them," said Martin.
"Where they are," asked News 8's Detelj.
"They're in New York. Hard to get a hold of they're not answering the phone any longer," said Martin.
The city and taxpayers left footing the bill.
"It is yeah it's frustrating," said Akesson.
If Yu tries to sell the property the city may get its money back or it could take it for back taxes but that could take years.