UPDATE: Bill paid; water to be turned on again at Midtown Manor, Key Estates

Norwalk mobile home park residents were scrambling this morning after city doesn't receive payment from owners.
Norwalk Reflector Staff
Sep 3, 2014

The residents of Midtown Manor and Key Estates mobile home parks had their water service shut off this morning.

The city did not receive water bill payments from the ownership of the parks, so the service was shut off.

There are about 200 lots at Midtown Manor and between 40 and 60 at Key Estates

Shortly after noon, the Norwalk finance department received a $33,770 check for both parks. Water service was to be restored to residents by 12:45 p.m.

Look for the full story in Thursday's Norwalk Reflector.

Comments

freespeech1

over 200 hundred families without water, cause someone didn't pay the bill. Pathetic

BabyBlue41

Not surprising. expected something for a while now. Theres another park in this group, Is it next in line to be shut off?

earlduck

there has to be a better way,leave the water on file a lawsuit to put a lien on the property,the property has to be valued more than the bill

swiss family

why not just annex that land over to Milan and let them supply the water and deal with those people??

yea right

Midtown manor is outside city limits by 500 ft therefore water and sewer is twice as much

J Cooper

Why would the city go to the expense, legal proceeding and time of filing a lawsuit or lien when the most efficient and cost saving solution to get a water bill paid is turn off the service, my guess the bill will be paid asap. The other resident genius that suggested "just annex that land over to Milan." Every time someone is late paying a water bill just give that property to another town? Stick to streetlights.

Chester Lester's picture
Chester Lester

How is it fair to the residents when they're actually paying their bill? It's time the city figures out a solution that's fair for everyone. These people are getting screwed for something that's not their fault. In addition, the city is creating one heck of a health hazard when they cut off the water source that supplies a clustered population. Sure it's easy to turn off the water, but is it really the best solution in a case like this? What would happen if the bill doesn't get paid for several days, or even a week?

swiss family

"Coop" you must be living in a bubble if you have to ask "WHY" would the city basically waste money???? it is politics... do you NOT see the government wasting our tax money and spending it like it is not their own and that they will not have to be accountable for it??? sorry to burst your bubble like that, but sooner or later , you have to face reality...OH and please .. don't refer to me as a "genius" I have tried to keep that a secret, and as humble as I am, it embarrasses me to have other people call me out and identify me by my gift... thanks

Fairlybadboy

I love you, Mrs. Robinson.

swiss family

@..J Coop..... 1:42 pm... aren't you supposed to be working Josh??? I mean at least sitting at your desk at your computer, trying to do something for the city instead of being on the newspapers site....if you are not going to do any work, why not go hom,e and use a vacation day?? instead of getting paid to do nothing all day as is your "norm"???

KURTje

Stamm the owner.

ladydye_5

The sad part is the residents are actually paying their bills to the landlord, then the landlord "steals" this money and doesn't pay the actual bill to the city. This is the same issue they had in Sandusky with Yost isn't it? At least they didn't let it go on for years and rack up $60K. Why can't people pay directly to the city?

tee866

Why doesn't the city just make the owner put in water meters for each trailer and then they could pay their own water bills without having to have it cut off.

lugnut2511

Tee, I have a friend that lives out there. His water is different every single month, like there is meters out there. Go figure that one out, its on his rent invoice that changes monthly

starryeyes83

Because they don't OWN the land. The trailer park owners do. That's why there's "lot rent".

You're paying to park your trailer, on their space.

Sometimes, the lot rent plus trailer payment/rent is higher than house payment would be.

lugnut2511

So, didnt this city learn anything from the Joe Yost situation in Sandusky? Have to ask this cause I know if i were 3 months late on water bill mines getting shut off, but how can you let 33k in water bill? The city should of acted alot faster , shame on whoever it is who handles that.

hambone

The owners are slum lords!

earlduck

well mr cooper the city doesn't turn the owners water off,they turn off the water of 200 innocent people,and if they left their water on and put a lien on his property he will have to deal with it and by the way the city has 2 attorneys

Now The Rest of...

As for individual meters, the trailer parks are private roads and one parcel its up to the owner to decide on individual meters for each lot or one meter for the entire parcel, not the city.

ladydye_5

Most parks have individual meters of some kind....how else are you charged for water? It is not a flat fee. It changes every month.

J Cooper

What good is a lien, that would only come into play if the owner tries to sell the property, it doesn't collect the money until the property is sold to satisfy the lien. As I said before, shut it off, and guess what it was paid, you are welcome.

Chester Lester's picture
Chester Lester

Sure, that's a great idea to screw people when they're actually paying their bill.

swiss family

wow are you by any chance...Nostradamus???

earlduck

thank you mr cooper for being right,I'm pretty sure its not going to be any other way,of course i was suggesting a lawsuit and lien,sorry to have a different opinion,but there was a case in sandusky a short time ago where residents suffered without water for a long time because landowner wouldn't pay

44846GWP

Key Estates used to be one of the nicest Moblie home parks in Norwalk. Then it was sold to an out of town manegment company. The guy running it is a true slum lord. I kniow someone who lived there. This guy wouldn't have the park plowed in the winter. He was to maintain the street lights,take a drive through, they are all dark. His area of grass only got mowed when it was tall enough to hide a three foot child! And he had the personality of a rock. The residents get a monthly water/sewer bill with their rent bill, its paid directly to this loser. Loser and now a thief. He should be in jail.

Now The Rest of...

One master meter or individual meters its still one large parcel and unfortunately up to the property owner how the water/sewer is billed, not the city.

Now The Rest of...

I am not defending the slumlord but the city has limited options to collect the money and shut off is the most efficient and they owe it to the taxpayers of the city to collect this debt. One suggestion but it would cost money, the tenants join together and pay their rent/water into an escrow account at the local municipal court to force repairs and payment of any outstanding debt such as water, this is only a temporary solution but it might force a change in management at the parks. If this was the first time this occurred was it an accounting error on the management's part? If the city would read/bill each trailer separately the owners of the trailer park would be responsible for any delinquent water bills.

earlduck

we have a law director and an assistant law director,i believe that they could figure out a way of getting this slumlord to pay a bill without leaving 200 trailers without drinking and flushing water,of course turning off the valve is the quickest and easiest but not the best,did you see what an emergency they made it out to be in toledo,well for these people its an emergency

J Cooper

Its very simplistic to think that the city's legal staff "could figure out a way of getting this slumlord to pay a bill" but in reality they have limited options under Ohio law to collect this type of debt. They have a legal obligation to keep the water/sewer fund solvent and self sufficient and not collecting this debt would violate that. I am sure there was contact with the management of the parks before they turned off the water with no other reasonable option remaining. Possibly the renters might seek the help of legal aide for legal action against the owners of the parks.

Chester Lester's picture
Chester Lester

The law also says the city can't turn the water off due to it being a severe health hazard. The city simply tap dances around the law by turning it down to a useless drip. When it's an individual home it's not such an issue, but a clustered population is completely different and that's where I find fault with the city. In these parks you might have several infants or elderly people to which running water is needed, not just a convenience. Then you need to consider all the toilets which can't be flushed. When the water is finally turned on, it wouldn't be hard to discharge more sewage than can be handled into the sanitary sewer if everyone is flushing at the same time.

As for the city first having contact with the park's manager, you are merely making an assumption. If the manager wanted to duck the city it wouldn't be very difficult. Also, the renters should not have to seek or hire legal council if they're paying the bills in full and on time. Perhaps it's time city officials take another look at how they handle these situations when dealing with a mobile home park. As I said before, this scenario is not the same as an individual residence.

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