SOUTH SIOUX CITY, Neb. (KCAU) – South Sioux City Fire Chief, Clint Merithew says, “It was difficult to do this. We have to make sure the building is safe for the tenants.”
Merithew hung 25 red tags on the doors of the scenic view apartment buildings, giving each resident just 30 days to find a new home.
And in a small community like this one, it wasn’t long before others took notice of the issue.
Director of Growing Community Connections, JoAnn Gieselman says, “The word came out and it was just like this is a tough time for families and what are they going to do.”
With a lack of low incoming housing in the area and only a short amount of time to relocate. South Sioux City’s community partners are working together to provide financial and emotion support for those being displaced.
Gieselman says, “We signed them up for rapid rehousing and tried to get them the information they needed on food pantries and that sort of thing.”
But even with the outreach, one resident says about half of the tenants still haven’t found new homes.
City officials say even though they’re empathetic to the situation, the apartments are simply not safe to live in.
Merithew says, “There were over 300 violations that were noted. Some of them were extremely egregious.”
Gieselman says, “I know everybody is doing all they can to help the families that are there.”
The owner of the apartment building, Lois Vogt is due in court at the end of this month. Facing two counts of keeping or maintaining a dangerous structure, which is a misdemeanor with a fine of 500 dollars.