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Trustee wants to sue apartment complex over heat, hot water


Some tenants of a South Bend apartment complex have gone without heat or hot water for three weeks.

The township trustee is fed up and is exploring legal action.

Tenants in the Cedar Glen apartments on Jefferson Boulevard started losing heat and hot water around Christmas time. A few weeks later, Portage Township Trustee Jason Critchlow says several Cedar Glen tenants who receive rent assistance from the trustee say they’re still without heat and hot water.

The trustee sends the rent money directly to the apartment complex. Critchlow says landlords sign a contract pledging to provide safe and habitable conditions in exchange for the public money.

He says the trustee’s attorney, Alex Bowman, is considering whether the township could sue the owners for breach of contract.

"On behalf of these residents, who is fighting for them?" Critchlow said. "Like, this is clearly an ongoing issue. They're not taking it seriously enough because it continues to happen. It's not happening at other apartment complexes so why is it happening with this one?"

A spokeswoman for Mayor James Mueller said no one was available Thursday for an interview on the situation. In a written statement, the city said tenant complaints around Christmas resulted in four city inspections. Two of those documented substandard heat and no hot water. Re-inspections were scheduled for Friday.

Cedar Glen did not immediately reply to WVPE’s interview request Thursday.

Parrott, a longtime public radio fan, comes to WVPE with about 25 years of journalism experience at newspapers in Indiana and Michigan, including 13 years at The South Bend Tribune. He and Kristi live in Granger and have two children currently attending Indiana University in Bloomington. In his free time he enjoys fixing up their home, following his favorite college and professional sports teams, and watching TV (yes that's an acceptable hobby).