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Saving a Piece of Glenview

Still suffering from poor living conditions and facing foreclosure, Sunset Village residents ask for community support.

Dear Editor,

These past months since have seen some significant improvements but also some serious setbacks for many residents here at . 

While we still suffer from the impact is less because most of the remaining residents are aware that our water was never potable and keep plenty of bottled water on hand.

The duration of the outages has been lessened because the court appointed receiver is making sure that contractors are being paid whereas the previous owner was reluctant to remedy the problems and when forced to make repairs, he simply switched contractors rather than pay for previous work. That being said, we still have a contaminated water supply. 

Unfortunately, we still don't have a properly operating fire suppression system, but again, the receiver has an open dialogue with the Village and so that an alternative plan is in place whereas the previous owner obfuscated and debilitated any effort by authorities to make the community safe. 

A lot of the abandoned homes are still sitting here despite the fact that it's illegal for them to remain so long. I am not sure why? 

There is still the unresolved matter of lot rent rebates. When the previous owner sold us our homes, part of our lot rent was rebated to us to offset the cost of the new homes. Under the bankruptcy protection and now receivership, we are no longer receiving these. Coupled with the yearly increase in lot rent of $45.00 our lot rent went up by $270.00 overnight. Causing a real hardship for most of us.

For many of us, our housing costs here represent a significant portion of our net monthly incomes, so consequently utility shut offs and other hardships are pretty commonplace as people try to prioritize bills and keep a roof over their family's heads. 

Many homeowners have walked away, many of those homes were sold out from under them because the previous owner was collecting the payments, but not paying the loan. Others were renters who were forced out.

So, a community that once had as many as 400 homes is now down to under 200. This makes it certain that lot fees will have to go up significantly just to make the property solvent if it is purchased by another operator. I don't think any of the remaining homeowners here could bear anymore increases and the bulk of us would have to leave. 

On the brighter side, the residents association began working with the Housing Opportunity Development Corporation and Willow Creek Church who are attempting to purchase a portion of the land for a new facility while helping the residents finance and repair the remaining land to preserve the homes that are here now.

Naturally, the previous owner is trying to drag out the foreclosure process making an already difficult situation just that much more burdensome for the residents that he had been terrorizing for years. However, if all goes well, it will mean that nearly two hundred families will have an opportunity to remain in the community.

If for some reason we cannot accomplish this, Glenview will lose two hundred workers, students, and active participants in the community. And considering the outpouring of support and encouragement we have received from the residents of Glenview, I don't think they would like to see us forced out. 

It is heartwarming to see that the people of Glenview have come to help us. People have offered donations, legal help, and numerous other forms of assistance. Had it not been for them, we all would have been gone already. I would just say that it's not over yet.

Any help that your readers could offer would be greatly welcomed and appreciated. Everything and anything helps and we are very grateful for everything we get. 

Chris Iosello
Sunset Village Resident

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