ZIONSVILLE, Ind. – Residents of the Zionsville Mobile Home Park say they’re concerned that they’ll be forced from their homes due to neglect by the property’s owner.
Court documents show that since 2015, the owner of the park, Laura Lei, has been in a battle with the Indiana State Department of Health and the Environmental Public Health Division over issues with a broken sewage system creating an unsafe environment for residents.
In 2017 more than a dozen residents of the park were forced to relocate after a judge ordered parts of the park shut down. Now the remaining residents say Lei has made no attempts to make repairs, so they’re concerned the courts will shut the entire park down.
“It’s not if, it’s when, when is it going to go, you know. She could come and tell us or whoever can come and tell us ‘hey he’s got to be out by the weekend,’” Jill Taylor said.
Taylor’s father, 88-year-old Louis Herring, is a 25-year resident of the park. She says her father is adamant that he doesn’t want to move, but knows there’s a strong likelihood he’ll have to.
“And I think that’s the same for all the people, the uncertainty of what’s going to happen,” she said.
Currently, only about five residents remain living in the park. The rest is filled with vacant trailers in various stages of disrepair.
One resident, Benny Louden, says he’s now resorted to cleaning up parts of the park himself to prevent it from falling into further disrepair.
“We’ve already piled up trash and gathered some limbs and we’re doing what we can on our part to keep this park open,” Louden said.
Louden says the part of the park where he and the remaining tenants live operates on a separate sewage system which hasn’t given them any problem. However, he says he’s concerned that without adequate repairs, the rest of the park will continue to deteriorate and prompt court and state officials to shut down the entire park.
“Hopefully what they’ll do is make the owner help us clean this place up, and get it up to par, to a nice place,” he said.
Park owner Laura Lei declined to be interviewed by FOX59/CBS4 citing pending litigation. However, over the phone, she expressed the belief that the park was in “good” shape. She also stated that she believed the state health department was lying about the park’s issues due “other motives.”
“If she’s not going to do anything, and they (the court) are going to do something legally, that’s fine, but get it to somebody else. City, give us a little help, somebody help us out, get her out of here and let’s get this place back to where it was,” Louden said.
Lei is listed as owing a restitution payment in the amount of $279,950.00. She’s scheduled for a telephone conference with the special judge in court in May.