Home Credit report Mobile Park Residents Threatened With Eviction So Jackson County Can Build Its New Jail | KCUR 89.3

Mobile Park Residents Threatened With Eviction So Jackson County Can Build Its New Jail | KCUR 89.3

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Current and former residents of a mobile home park that is in the process of being licensed for a new detention center appeared at Monday’s Jackson County Legislature meeting to criticize officials for what they consider mismanagement and mismanagement of their forced displacement.

Last summer, more than 100 households in Heart Mobile Village in eastern Jackson County were told the county had purchased the land for $7 million to build a new jail and that all residents should move by the end of February.

In response, and with the help of the KC Tenants tenant union, a number of residents demanded that the county fully compensate the residents for the move, make cash payments of $10,000 separately from the allowances, and reverse the relocation payments. rent.

The county agreed to some of these requests, and in August the Legislative Assembly approved spending $1.7 million to cover relocation costs and financial aid, and voted to cancel rent payments through February. This plan also included providing $10,000 in housing assistance to each household and partnering with the nonprofit Community Services League to help residents resettle.

The county spent about $1.3 million on relocation payments to residents, which includes relocation assistance and costs associated with moving tenants or acquiring old trailers, according to a county report. By the end of February, 75 residents had been relocated and 26 others were about to move out. Four did not have definitive resettlement plans, according to the report.

In February, as the relocation deadline approached, the county approved spending an additional $800,000 to assist with relocation services for the remaining 31 residents who still lived in Heart Mobile Village.

But some former and current residents of the mobile home park say they haven’t received full compensation from the county or adequate support to move. Others are now at risk of deportation.

They are demanding that the county provide full compensation to the remaining residents, including a relocation plan, an end to all eviction proceedings and an audit of the money the county has spent on relocation assistance.

Rob Jennings, a resident still living in Heart Mobile Village, told lawmakers he was threatened with eviction and did not receive payment from the county until mid-March.

“And then I was told to come out three days later,” Jennings said. “He hadn’t even wiped my bank.”

When Jennings began looking for a new place to live, he tore his meniscus and underwent surgery. As a result of this injury and the stress of having to move, Jennings said he no longer had control of his life.

He asked the Legislative Assembly for more money to support his move.

“‘We’ll put you in a new place and you’ll have $10,000 in the bank,’ so I was told,” Jennings said. “And now I am paralyzed for life. And my life is turned upside down and I’m stuck here.

Zoila Guzman, a disabled resident who does not qualify for benefits, said Heart Mobile Village was the only place she felt safe.

“I need a house to live in, and because I don’t qualify for benefits I have nowhere to go because every place I applied to they turned me down,” said Guzman. “What will I do?”

Vietnam War veteran Urban Schaefer lived in Heart Mobile Village with his family for nearly seven years before moving in late January to Excelsior Springs, Missouri. Now Schaefer is battling an eviction notice filed against him last week.

“I have worked for the past few years to rebuild my credit. … And every time someone files an eviction, it goes on your credit report and it ruins you,” Schaefer said. “If I decide to move to where I am now, they’ll see an eviction on the record and they won’t hire me. And I’ve never been evicted anywhere.

Schaefer criticized the Legislative Assembly for a series of broken promises. He said he received no monetary compensation and no disabled ramps were built to enable him to enter and exit his home. He said he only got a used trailer from the county.

“They said I wouldn’t have any out-of-pocket expenses,” Schaefer said. “I had over $2,000 in out-of-pocket expenses. They’re supposed to build me a handicap ramp. It was never built. My electric scooter that I’m supposed to get around with has been out for three months and it’s in shambles.