Tenants could lose water

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, June 1, 2011

SALISBURY — The city may turn off the water to two mobile home parks if the owner doesn’t pay his delinquent water bill.
Nearly 180 mobile homes in Matika Village on Airport Road and Circle Drive Community on U.S. 29 face the possibility of no water on June 30.
The tenants pay about $210 per month. The rent is supposed to include water.
But owner Tim Smith’s water account is “severely delinquent,” said Jim Behmer, Salisbury-Rowan Utilities director.
Behmer said he couldn’t say how much Smith owes, but his account has been delinquent for a year.
Four city employees spent more than an hour today distributing courtesy notices, which warn tenants to “take whatever precautions are necessary to protect him or herself from the loss of water.” It was the third and final notice, Behmer said.
“It’s not fair that we pay rent on time and he’s not paying” the water bill, Fabian Martinez said through an interpreter.
Last year, Smith had the most unpaid property taxes in Rowan County. He owed nearly $135,000 on multiple business accounts as of May 2010. In addition to the mobile home parks, Smith owns Rubber One Recycling on Peach Orchard Road.
Smith could not be reached for comment. Tenants said Smith told them someone embezzled from him last year.
Read more in Thursday’s Post.
Contact reporter Emily Ford at 704-797-4264.