Watch CBS News

Elk Grove neighborhood frustrations grow with abandoned state-owned building

Here's why Elk Grove can't take action against long-abandoned building
Here's why Elk Grove can't take action against long-abandoned building 02:07

ELK GROVE — Homeowners in an Elk Grove neighborhood have been complaining for more than a year about a vacant building that has become a blight.

The abandoned building is overgrown with weeds. It has broken and boarded-up windows, and the front door lock has been pried off.

Neighbors say it's become a magnet for illegal dumping.

"I've seen, sometimes, maybe 10 bags of trash over there and mattresses and other stuff," Guru Randhawa said.

"You see some homeless people taking shelter on the grounds of the property," Natalia Kadkin said.

The building is in a residential neighborhood near Bond and Elk Grove Florin Road.

William Jones can see it from his front yard.

"So I kept sending in complaints," he said.

Jones and other neighbors have reported the problems to the City of Elk Grove.

"It's a bit concerning being right across the street from it," Kadkin said.

The city said it cannot issue the property owner a code enforcement citation because it's owned by the State of California.

CBS13 confirmed the building was once used by the Department of Fish and Wildlife as an aquatic bio-assessment laboratory. That agency says it was closed about six years ago.

An email obtained by CBS13 shows the city has offered to maintain the property and send the state a bill.

"The state needs to do something," Jones said. "Sell the building or something because it's dangerous."

"I would like to tell the state to go ahead and take care of your property just as we are accountable to take care of ours," Kadkin said.

Some people would like to see it used as a community or youth center, but Jones isn't sure that will work.

"I'd like to see them tear it down," he said. "That's probably the best thing that could happen."

The California Assembly member who represents Elk Grove said the state Department of Real Estate is working to either repurpose or sell the property.

View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.