Glen Acre apartment building condemned; city alleges water theft

There's a lot of finger pointing going around at the Glen Acre apartment complex.

Residents say water is included in their rent payments and they've been paying on time. However, city officials say the property managers have known about unpaid water bills since November. The city also alleges someone illegally turned the water back on after it was shut off last year. But a property manager says this is all a misunderstanding.

"They just (sic) leaving us out here to dry,â?? says Marshall Jenkins.

Heâ??s not sure where heâ??s going to sleep tonight.

â??I don't know where,â?? says Jenkins who has lived at the complex for three years. â??I might have to go stay with my youngest son at the present time. My youngest daughter might have to go stay with my oldest daughter."

Jenkins and other residents at Glen Acre Apartments were given 24 hours to leave after the city condemned their building.

â??You can't just up and move in 24 hours,â?? says another resident.

In a statement released Wednesday, city officials say management is not providing water to tenants, making the buildings unlivable.

Now, the city is turning off the tap because of unpaid water bills.

â??The city should've stepped on the owners necks. They really should've come after them,â?? says Jenkins.

NBC25 reached out to management Wednesday.

Management declined on-camera comment but says they're working with the city and this is all a misunderstanding.

But in a statement, city officials say any further action must take place in court.

Thatâ??s a process far too long for Jenkins.

â??They don't really care about us,â?? says Jenkins.

There is another building in that complex but management has worked out a payment plan to pay off those past due water bills. Meantime, the city is investigating who illegally turned back on the water to 1718 Pierson Road.

City officials tell me they're taking water theft very seriously and if found, the culprits could be prosecuted.

City officials released the following statement on Wednesday:

Flint, Michigan â?? August 6, 2014

â?? The City of Flintâ??s Department of Building Safety and Inspection has recently posted condemnation notices on a multi-unit apartment building at 1718 W. Pierson Rd. The building, along with a multi-unit building at 1910 W. Pierson Rd. comprise the Glen Acres Apartment Complex. The building at 1718 was condemned for failing to provide water for proper living conditions to tenants. Under city law, residential dwellings must have water service to maintain livability.

In November of 2013, the City of Flint terminated water service to Unit 1718 because of unpaid bills. In June of 2014 it was found that water was illegally turned on at 1718 and water service was again shut off. By comparison, the building at 1910 W. Pierson Rd. has had water service and payments for water service continue to be made. Condemnation notice was also posted at 1910, but this was an error and has been corrected and notices removed from the address.

The City of Flint will continue to monitor the situation at the Glen Acres Apartment Complex to ensure that all applicable city and state laws are being followed. The landlord has known since November 2013 that the water service to 1718 was terminated. It is the responsibility of the landlord to notify tenants when there is a termination of water service to ensure the tenants have enough time to find an alternative place of living. While no change in the condemnation order has occurred, the city is in communication with the management group of the complex. Any further action on the matter would need to take place in court.

The City reminds residents and businesses that water theft is a serious offense that will be enforced by law. Anyone charged with tampering with water service equipment resulting in unauthorized restoration of service, will be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law. Water theft is a contributing factor to rising water costs for all City of Flint customers. Anyone with information on illegal water connections in the city should call 810-766-7015.