Harrisburg City Council looking at additional steps to help sinkhole victims

HARRISBURG, Pa. (WHTM) – Dozens of families who live along South 14th Street in Harrisburg have been dealing with the stress and anxiety that followed a major sinkhole problem that shook the foundation of the neighborhood in early 2014.

Since then, several people have left, but a few have stayed including Maria Vargas-Graves. She says it has been a tough stretch.

“Our lives turned into chaos,” Vargas-Graves said. “Things will only start to get back to normal when we move out of here.”

Vargas-Graves says all of the property owners have gone through the appraisal process to get market value for their homes. She says that she remains in talks with the appraiser because she feels her home is worth more than the current offer because of upgrades she has made over the years.

During Monday night’s city council meeting, President Wanda Williams asked council to consider a measure that will excuse those who have not paid their city taxes since the sinkhole disaster. Williams says that will include 2017.

“I initiated this along with Jackie Parker,” Williams said. “They need an opportunity to resolve some of the issues they have.”

Williams says council will likely vote in 30 days. The plan would also consist of a refund for those who paid their city taxes during that period.

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