Council President David Fleisher has addressed the controversial rent increase at Parc Apartments – now on hold – approved by the rent control board on Jan. 11, a move residents say ignored the wishes of tenants and had little to no input from the community.
“We recognize there were serious concerns, if not blatant errors, in the process of that, and we know the municipal attorney is looking at that thoroughly,” Fleisher said at council’s meeting on Jan. 24. “In the interim, there’s a directive of no increase as approved by the rent review board to take place until that review thoroughly occurs.
“We know that was brought to our attention and dealt with promptly and we await actions of the municipal attorney.”
Resident Anne Einhorn addressed the meeting, saying proper notice of the rent increase was communicated only by a paper in the apartment manager’s office. She also described the need for action at Parc.
“Testimony was given by the apartment manager of Parc Apartments that the elevators would be fully functioning by the next day,” Einhorn noted. “Nope, not on Thursday nor Friday of that week. This past weekend, neither elevator in building B was operating. A 10-year-old handicapped child in a wheelchair with a colostomy bag had to wait hours to be carried up seven flights of stairs to his home by our fire department.
“ … I am angry at this point and tired that this whole apartment complex is allowed to do business as usual.”
Solicitor Howard Long echoed Einhorn’s sentiments.
“I commit to make it my mission to compel this facility to make conditions livable to the people who are there,” he said, addressing Einhorn’s comments about the service violations and poor condition of the building. “That’s absolutely disgusting, and there’s no place for somebody not to be on call that a young child has to sit in the lobby for hours because both elevators are down.
“It stops now.”
During her comments, Mayor Susan Shin Angulo acknowledged the 18 people who died in last month’s two mass shootings in California, as well as those who volunteered during the MLK day of service to complete township projects. She also said the community center is anticipated to reopen by the end of February, and that the deadline for grant applications for the RISE (Recovery and Investment for a Stronger Economy) program – has been extended to Feb. 28.
Council also approved the following: the purchase of outer vest carriers, ammunition and 12 vehicles for the police department; an application for a state grant to renovate the Brandywoods Park facility; and replacement of the HVAC system at the Tilelli Community Center.
The next council meeting will be on Monday, Feb. 13, at 7:30 p.m.