ALPENA – A Lincoln Manor resident who spoke to The News about a bed bug problem in the apartments in August has received formal eviction notice from the apartment’s management company, Prime Properties Management.
Residents have complained about bed bugs for months and the infestation has prevented the Alcona County Commission on Aging from offering some services to residents there. Staff from the Commission on Aging have accused the apartment managers of not responding, despite the fact that the agency has been in contact with the managers since then.
In August, Ron Williams told The News that he once had bed bugs in his apartment but they haven’t returned since his apartment was sprayed for them. A photo of Williams that accompanied the story showed a pack of cigarettes on a side table next to his daybed. Williams, who has chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, has oxygen.
The next day, facility management gave Williams a notice that he “Willfully or negligently causes a serious and persistent health risk” because he was “It was determined that he has oxygen / has oxygen in his unit and smokes.”
The notification asked him to either eliminate the health hazard or move off.
Williams has since received a subpoena from Sandra Wright, Prime Properties Management’s attorney. The subpoena states that Williams has oxygen and insists on smoking in his unit, which puts the entire home on fire.
“Despite repeated warnings and the 7-day notice regarding this health and safety risk, he continues to smoke and has threatened fellow tenants to hand him over for it.” the court calls states.
Williams said he doesn’t smoke in the apartment and that he was being rejected for speaking to the press.
Williams said he had nowhere else to go.
“It’s just so depressing” he said. “If they drive me away, I can’t take my oxygen with me because I’m on the street.”
Barb Corona, Chief Operations Officer at Prime Properties, refused to comment on tenant issues.
When asked about an update on the apartment’s bed bug issue, Corona said a letter had been sent to the editor on The News that could be used for comments. The news did not receive a letter from Corona or Prime Properties Management by Wednesday evening.
Corona informed Lincoln Manor tenants in a letter dated October 6 that a dog sniffing for insects had been called on September 29 “Overall, we received a positive report for every unit.”
But Lenny Avery, executive director of the Alcona County Commission on Aging, told the Alcona County Board of Commissioners on Oct. 7 that the homes are not bed bug free.
He told Board Agency staff that they had violated their own guidelines to care for residents in infected homes so that a senior could get a bath. This senior needs a bath three times a week, but they haven’t been able to bathe her for two months.
Avery said the agency’s staff saw around six bed bugs in this resident’s home in the hour and 25 minutes they spent with her.
The agency, along with five residents of Lincoln Manor, has filed a formal complaint with the Attorney General about the bed bug infestation that exists in part of the apartments
Avery said Wednesday that they are still waiting to hear from the attorney general but will continue to advocate for Lincoln Manor residents.
“The senior center continues to advocate for the residents of Lincoln Manor.” Avery said “It is still our position that Lincoln Manor shouldn’t try to evict residents for voicing the bed bug problem at the facility.”
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