Deadline draws closer for veteran to get her property cleaned up

Velia Alarcon stands on her 3 1/2 lots on Bay View Avenue in Pass Christian.
Velia Alarcon stands on her 3 1/2 lots on Bay View Avenue in Pass Christian.

HARRISON COUNTY, MS (WLOX) - Remember last month when we told you about the veteran who was given 45 days by the county to get her property cleaned?

Since we aired that story several people have volunteered to help Velia Alarcon.

But as Christina Garcia reports with the November 21 deadline fast approaching there's still work left to do.

"I don't have a lot of money, but if you work hard it still looks good," Alarcon said.

On October 7, the county gave Velia Alarcon 45 days to fix her Pass Christian property and now the deadline is almost here. But, despite her efforts and the efforts of more than a dozen volunteers over the last few weeks, the property still isn't up to code. She isn't sure how she'll get everything completely fixed by then.

"I still have to move my shed. They claim my shed didn't have a permit and they won't give me a permit because I don't have a dwelling. So my plan is put a dwelling here," Alarcon said.

The home that was on the property was destroyed in a fire last year. Then the Navy reservist was called up to deploy to Afghanistan. She returned to Mississippi back in April.

"When I came back from Afghanistan, I wanted to tweak it and go make some money to rebuild," she said. "Who'd a guessed I'd have to spend seven months here working and working and working and then I'm thinking that it's not good enough. Are you kidding me?"

Harrison County officials and neighbors said the veteran's property is hurting property values in the neighborhood and inviting unwanted pests like rodents, mosquitoes and snakes.

"I've stuck to my idea. My property is my property. I'm going to clean it because it's mine," she said.

If Alarcon does not get the property up to code by the deadline the county will send a crew out to complete the work and bill her for the cost. Alarcon hopes she can get the help she needs before it comes to that. Alarcon said she is spending so much time trying to save her property, she is unable to work full time at the moment.

If you're interested in helping Alarcon you can call her at 228-344-8840.

Copyright 2013 WLOX. All rights reserved.