Rat complaints persist in Heights neighborhood

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[FILE PHOTO / THE COAST STAR]

SPRING LAKE HEIGHTS — Rodents said to be coming from a local residence are still bothering borough residents, according to citizens who attended a recent borough council meeting.

It’s been about three weeks since the public came to the board complaining about rat infestations, which they believe are coming from a house on Jersey Avenue, which is occupied by an elderly woman, according to both the council and public. 

Resident Jay Zahner, who had approached the council with vermin concerns in earlier meetings, returned on Oct. 4 to follow up on his experiences since then. 

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“The problem continues,” Mr. Zahner told the council. “On Tuesday I put out traps and I quickly caught three rats.” 

“I have to emphasize, this is not a neighbor dispute, this is a bad situation that is a health matter,” Mr. Zahner continued. “It is affecting a neighborhood both in terms of their health, in terms of resale value of the houses … it is really bad.” 

According to the council, there is an existing ordinance that could possibly solve this issue, but there is obvious hesitancy to remove a resident, an elderly one specifically, from their home. 

“Through our partners at the county level and the state level, we’ve worked through the resources that are out there, but when it comes to removing a citizen from their home and seizing their property, that is something that I don’t’ think any of us as Americans want to take lightly,” Mayor Chris Campion said. 

 

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