“Completely abandoned”: Stevens Point mobile home tenants face water disconnection
WAUSAU, Wis. (WSAW) - Four Seasons mobile home tenants could wake up Thursday morning without water after city officials and tenants said the property’s landlord has neglected to pay water utilities.
The water disconnection noticed was presented to more than two dozen residents a week ago. The city said this is not the first time they had to issue notices to the property.
“We have had to issue disconnect notices before, but they have always been taken care of before the disconnect notice expired,” said Stevens Point Mayor Mike Wiza.
Shelly Bunk is a resident of Four Seasons and has lived there for more than seven years. She said throughout her time in the mobile home park, she has received three notices. But this notice, she expressed, may come with action.
“We have been totally, completely abandoned by Christopher Reeves”, Bunk said. Reeves is the landlord of the mobile home park in Stevens Point. He also owns a mobile home park in Schofield, which is facing issues of its own.
Four Seasons residents have a rental agreement with Reeves, saying he is responsible for paying the water bill, but the city said they have not received payment.
“A neighbor emailed Christopher Reeves and asked if was real notice, he emailed back and said ‘not to worry,’” Bunk explained.
But the city said residents should worry.
“The state public service commission actually oversees this because it is a utility, just like electric and gas,” Wiza explained. “We have guidelines that we must follow and that includes that notice prior to disconnection and we are required to disconnect.”
Both parties said communication with Reeves, is nearly nonexistent.
“He’s done the same thing to other trailer courts,” Bunk explained. “There is one in Fitchburg, Wisconsin, Detroit, Michigan, and one in Schofield that is closing because of Christopher Reeves negligence and non-communication.”
When the water is turned off, residents also face their homes being condemned.
“The laws are very clear,” Wiza explained. “If you do not have running water it is inhabitable and that is through the health department. That also is not the city. Running water, you could probably live without. You could probably buy bottled water, however, you need to use the bathroom. And without a sanitary sewer, it becomes a health problem.”
Wiza said there are temporary places for the residents to consider.
“There is the Salvation Army and a homeless shelter here as well,” he explained. “There is a private entity that has stepped up and offered to help people transition as well… but those are shelters.”
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