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The lot has been vacant for more than six years. During that time, it's been maintained by the fire department and a neighbor. 

HAYESVILLE -- The Vermillion Township Trustees will soon convert a vacant lot near the heart of Hayesville into a parking lot for the Hayesville-Vermillion Fire Department. 

Vermillion Township acquired the grassy lot, located along Mechanic Street beside the fire department's current parking lot, through a recent transfer from the Ashland County Land Bank. 

"It's been a vacant lot for years now," said Hayesville-Vermillion Fire Department Chief Steve Young. "The structure, it was town down about six years ago, and has been mowed by the fire department or the neighbor ever since."

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Fire Chief Steve Young, Vermillion Township Trustee Sam Yeater and two representatives of the land bank, Erin Collins and Ann Wurster pose for a picture as they hand off the deed for new property to the township.

Ashland County Commissioner Jim Justice was serving as Hayesville mayor when the house was torn down with grant funding, and the lot seeded with grass.

In October, the Land Bank learned the property remained unmaintained by its rightful owners. It was foreclosed upon and could be taken by the Land Bank and transferred to a new owner with little to no investment. 

"We saw it as an opportunity for the Land Bank to help Vermillion Township, so we just facilitated it," said land bank director Erin Collins.

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The fire department's current parking lot is used for department events, community events and sporting events in the area.

The fire department's current lot is already often used as overflow parking for community events, sporting events and more. Once paved, the extra lot will provide even more parking. 

As for the fire department itself, the lot will be helpful for its annual car show in the fall. 

There's no immediate timeline determined for the lot's installation. 

"It's just nice to have some closure on it, because it's been some time," Young said. 

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