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Update: How L&I cleaned out its clean and seal backlog

We caught up with L&I Commissioner Fran Burns, who gave us a few more details about the city's announcement earlier today that it had cleared its backlog of properties that needed to be cleaned and sealed.

When she took over as commissioner, Burns says, L&I had about 700 properties waiting to be cleaned and sealed.

She says the department got through the backlog by hiring two more clean and seal crews with federal stimulus dollars, while pushing accountability measures.

It used to take eight months from the time L&I got a complaint to clean and seal a property, but Burns has sped up and formalized that process. Properties that L&I receives complaints about are inspected within 45 days, and a team is dispatched to clean and seal them within 10 days after the inspection.

Burns does say that some properties in the backlog no longer needed to be cleaned and sealed — some were demolished or redeveloped while others had already been cleaned and sealed but records weren't kept properly.

Though the backlog's been cleared out, Burns says it's clear that more properties in the city need to be cleaned and sealed, but aren't on L&I's radar. She wants residents to send in their complaints now because they'll be handled in a timely fashion.

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