Police tape is strung around the La Cygne mobile home community following a decision by the La Cygne City Council to declare it an immediate hazard. The city is giving the owner of the property 30 days to remove the hazards. (Photos by Roger Sims/Linn County Journal)
LA CYGNE – The owner of a mobile home park in La Cygne has been given 30 days to rectify what city officials contend are immediate hazards on the 2.17-acre property at 627 N. Broadway.
The La Cygne City Council in a special meeting on Thursday, June 29, in two separate actions voted to determine what constituted an immediate hazard and then approved sending a letter to the owner of the mobile home park giving the company the 30-day notice.
In addition to the notice to clean up the lot, the owner will also be required to pay nearly $2,800 to cover the costs of recent mowing and trimming of the lots in the mobile home park, which covers an area that in some parts of the city would be equal to a city block.
On the advice of City Attorney Burton Harding, the council first voted to list conditions it considered hazardous. Those conditions included broken glass, construction debris, exposed steel rebar on the property, open electrical boxes and exposed electrical wiring.
The measure passed on a 3-to-1 vote with Councilman David Brenneman voting against it and Councilmen Thomas Capp, Jerome Mitzner and Keith Stoker voting in favor. Stoker attended the meeting via telephone.
In an email on Thursday, Brenneman said, "I agree with everything but debris & broken glass being immediate hazard. So that was the reason i voted against the motion. I felt if we put debris in the description, then we would have to consider construction debris as an immediate hazard."
Bainbridge Homes is the company in charge of marketing the few mobile homes remaining in the park.
The council then unanimously voted to contact the owner about rectifying the problem within 30 days.
If the property owner does not comply, the city can go onto the property, make the needed corrections and place a lien against the property.
According to county records, the owner of the property is listed as La Cygne MHC LLC, which has a mailing address of Meridian, Idaho. The city had been dealing with an Doug Hensley, an Osawatomie man who at a council meeting last year said he was representing the owners.
In the summer of 2022, workers for a mobile home park management company, began removing homes that were damaged beyond rehabilitation. Hensley told city officials that plans were being made to replace those mobile homes with more recent models and to rehabilitate the remaining homes to make them marketable.
However, former city codes officer Allison Fox in August told the council that she had been advised the owners were running out of funds to complete the job.