Condo residents to lose electricity in Prince George’s
By Tim Barber
24 October 2016
TEMPLE HILLS, Md. (ABC7) — On Monday, dozens of families in Prince
George’s County were told their electricity will be shut off on Oct. 25.
The residents at the Lynnhill Condominiums told ABC7 On Your Side they
received a notice of intent about the proposed shut off.
“None of the residents really know what’s going on,” said Passion
Pleasant says this is just the latest in a long list of problems at the
She told us the elevators are broken, so her five kids have to walk up
six floors every day.
Fire damage is still visible from a blaze in 2014.
Residents also claim the complex is a crime magnet. 7 On Your Side saw
detectives walk into the building Monday evening, but it is not clear
what they were doing there.
“I am going to have to move,” said resident Sam Johnson.
Two weeks ago, 7 On Your Side reported that officials with Prince
George’s County warned residents the utilities could possibly be turned
off because condo managers have not been paying all the utility bills.
We called the complex’s management company, but no one returned our
Residents are not sure whether or not to blame management or condo
owners who have failed to pay their fees.
“We have, really, nowhere to go,” said Pleasant.
Condo Residents Forced to Leave After Condo Association Fails
to Pay Back Bills
By Tracee Wilkins
25 October 2016
More than 100 families began to leave their homes today in Prince
George's County, Maryland, after their electric and gas service was
shut off because the condo association hadn't paid $1.2 million in
The drama at Lynhill Condominiums in Temple Hills has been building for
years; the complex has a history of code violations that stretches back
into the late 1990s. The complex filed for bankruptcy protection in
past management company was misusing residents' condo fees
More recently, the condo association alleged that a past management
company was misusing residents' condo fees.
"What they did was they were taking owners' condo fees and not paying
utilities," said Stanley Briscoe, the condo association's treasurer.
The condo board treasurer said he was frustrated, because he had hoped
the association could reach an agreement with Pepco. The utilities have
said they had worked with the complex for years, but said they had no
choice after failed payment plans couldn't get accounts caught up.
Tuesday, residents were given a new deadline: Three days to leave.
Pepco shut off power to the complex; Washington Gas quickly shut of gas
service as well. Now, the buildings are unfit for occupancy.
And the residents -- many low-income, and many renting from condo
owners -- are trying to navigate dark hallways to get their belongings
moved out before someone else beats them to it.
"My house has been broken into three times, from being around here,"
said tenant Jessica Rollins. "I guess all hell is going to break loose
Rollins has five children, and she had just filled up her refrigerator
with food when the power was cut.
"I have been paying my rent on time for the last two years, I've never
had any issues or anything," Rollins said. "And for them to tell me
they can't do anything is unacceptable."
How you can help the residents forced out of Temple Hills
26 October 2016
TEMPLE HILLS, Md. - More than 300 residents in Temple Hills have been
forced out of their homes after the condo association responsible for
the building they live in failed to pay a massive debt of over $1
million for past due utilities. This resulted in the electricity and
gas being cut off at the Lynnhill Condominiums on Tuesday.
Authorities have posted notices for residents to vacate the building
and they are being given three days to find other housing
accommodations as the property will be closed off. Even with no power
or heat, many residents with nowhere to go still stayed at their units
overnight on what was the coldest night so far this fall.
Prince George’s County said they are attempting to assist these
residents to find other housing and resources along with transportation
to help relocate them.
There has also been an outpouring of support from local churches along
with several organizations such as the American Red Cross and Salvation
Army coming together to bring food and clothing donations as well as
temporary shelter. Two moving companies have also been helping tenants
move their belongings at no cost.
So how can you
Prince George’s County has established a “Neighbors in Need Fund" for
donations. To donate, go to thecommunityfoundation.org/donate.
American Red Cross National Capital Region:
The Salvation Army National Capital Area Command:
Anyone in need of help or would like to offer help can also call the
Homeless Hotline at 888-731-0999, 301-864-7095 or 301-532-3219.
Service ordered back on at Lynnhill Condominiums
28 October 2016
The Public Service Commission of Maryland has ordered the utilities
back on at Lynnhill Condominiums in Temple Hills.
As of 9:30 p.m. Friday night, the lights are back on at the complex.
State regulations require utility companies to notify customers at
least 14 days before terminating service. The notices must be placed in
highly visible public areas, like mailboxes, entrances, and exits.
The Maryland Attorney General received affidavits from residents who
claimed a notice was posted on Monday, October 24, that utilities would
be turned off as early as the next day.
The Attorney General said based on the affidavits, Pepco or WGL, or
possibly both, violated the regulations.
The commission ordered the utilities to give a written response
explaining whether they gave a proper 14-day notice. They must also
explain why they shouldn’t be fined or face a civil penalty.
In the meantime, the commission ordered Pepco and WGL to restore
service as soon as possible.
Conditions have now turned dangerous for residents of a financially
failed condominium complex who refuse to leave even though the
utilities have been cut for four days.
Fire officials are deeply worried about tenants using open flame
candles and generators inside the two seven-story towers at the
Lynnhill Condominiums on Good Hope Avenue in Temple Hills. Fire alarms
do not work because power to the buildings has been cut. Fire
extinguishers in darkened hallways have been removed.
Prince George’s County attempted to condemn the complex after the
utilities were cut, but Prince George’s County Circuit Court Judge Leo
H. Green Jr. ruled that residents should be allowed access for a week
while efforts to force PEPCO and Washington Gas to restore utilities go
forward in court.
The ruling set up what amounts to a human crisis for those who refuse
to leave. Police have brought in outdoor lighting and are standing
guard to prevent unrest or looting.
There were 77 units occupied by at least 116 families, according to
Renee Pope, Assistant Director of Prince George’s County Community
County officials are assisting at least 37 of those families with
relocation to other apartment complexes or homeless shelters. Others
have found accommodations on their own through family and friends, Pope
said. An unknown number are staying put.
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