Across Indiana, scores of homeowners are walking away from meth-contaminated properties, leaving a growing number of apartments, trailers and houses abandoned because they are too expensive to clean up, reports the Indianapolis Star. Under state regulations, owners are responsible for paying to test properties where meth labs are found and, if necessary, for cleanup to make the properties safe for people to live in.
But getting owners to clean up the properties has proved difficult in many counties, where health department officials lack the authority to enforce the regulations or the money to do the cleanup themselves. In many cases, the residences sit vacant. At least 18 states require residences with meth residue to be cleaned. In many, the bill is the responsibility of property owners.