INDIANAPOLIS — After complains of mold, broken windows and requests for help, the Marion County Public Health is closing in on a north side apartment complex.
Health department investigators went door-to-door to once-and-for-all uncover the full scope of the health-related issues at the Lakeside Pointe at Nora Apartments.
Malik Plummer has lived at Lakeside Pointe since September. He was one of dozens of residents who went weeks without hot water earlier this year.
"Health department came by today. It was a good sight to see," Plummer said. "No one should live with some of the conditions I've seen."
That's why the health department's presence Wednesday was a welcome sight.
"Residents can see that there is someone looking to get their issues taken care of," Plummer said.
Health department investigators went door-to-door looking for any additional health code violations. It was a response to a large number of housing complaints in recent months, and it was a response to pressure.
"Through a combination of (RTV6's) efforts and Nora Council efforts and our efforts at the city, we really elevated this and asked health and hospital to make this a super urgent situation," District 2 City-County Councilwoman Colleen Fanning said.
And Fanning said that pressure to will continue.
"Ideally, this land owner gets enough pressure on him that he decides to sell to a responsible land owner," she said.
Lakeside Point at Nora has had tax exempt status since 2007, which means ownership doesn't have to pay property taxes.
"If you're not providing livable conditions, there's no way you should be eligible for not-for-profit status," Fanning said.
That status can only be revoked by the state legislature or the property tax assessment board of appeals.
"Our job is to just make sure everybody stays engaged until there's some sort of resolution here so that our neighbors can live in humane conditions," Fanning said.
Before the worst-case scenario happens.
"At this point, their property should probably be condemned," Fanning said. "It's a long and ugly process."
The health department's work is not done yet. They will go through all the information collected Wednesday and deicde if more violation orders need to be issued. That could happen by next week.
Lakeside Pointe management did not respond to a request for comment.
LAKESIDE POINT SERIES
March 22: Major health concerns at north side Indianapolis apartment complex
March 26: Residents say an apartment complex on north side of Indianapolis is unhealthy
April 1: Health Department blames owner for apartment conditions
April 18: Unhealthy conditions fester at north side apartment complex
May 2: Problem-ridden apartment complex pays no property taxes
May 31: Community rallies for north side apartment complex residents