What to do with unlivable red-tagged units at Syringa Mobile Home Park

MOSCOW, ID - After months of dealing with unsafe drinking water, the situation at the Syringa Mobile Home Park seems to be looking up, but Latah County Commissioners need to figure out what to do with some unusable units that no one seems to want.

Reporter Rachel Dubrovin gives us an update about the mobile home park and its living conditions.

"It's been an interesting ride," said Syringa Mobile Home Park Resident James Ware.

James Ware said he's lived in the Syringa Mobile Home Park for about 14 years now.

"The maintenance and the water and the sewers, it's always been kind of a circus," said Ware.

In December 2013... Idaho's Department of Environmental Quality told residents not to drink the water because of unsafe levels of lead, chlorine, and coliform bacteria that comes from fecal matter. Many residents were even left without any running water for a period of time.

"I would have moved if I had a place to go, and the resources to do it, we probably would have been gone, or I would have been gone quite some time ago," said Ware. "But it's just not that simple, you know, so you got to grin and bear it."

The DEQ lifted their ban on the drinking water in March, but Ware said he still doesn't feel comfortable consuming it.

"I don't," said Ware. "No, I don't talk to a lot of people who do. Just from the smell of it, you can tell that it's a little better than it has been in the past, but you don't trust it."

The county is continuing their red tagging program. They said now about 28 of the 100 units have red tags like this one here, so people know that they are unsafe to move into.

"The taxes are minimal," said Latah County Treasurer Louis Reed.

Reed met with the county commissioners on Wednesday morning to explain that five of the units with red tags have delinquent taxes and solid waste fees, however she said it doesn't make sense for the county to take ownership of them.

"Since the county has declared them unlivable, I can't sell them," said Reed.

The Department of Environmental Quality said they're still working with property owner Magar to bring the water system into full compliance, but Ware said he's not getting his hopes up.

"I'm going to be interested to see if they really do hold him to that plan," said Ware.

When it comes to the delinquent taxes from the red-tagged units, Latah County Treasurer Lois Reed said it's a small amount of tax dollars, so county commissioners are expected to cancel the taxes next week.
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