Canyonville terminates water services for Forest Glen Senior Residence

CANYONVILLE, Ore.- Canyonville City Councilors unanimously voted on Monday, March 18th, to terminate water services to Forest Glen Senior Residence on May 1st.

During the City Council meeting, councilors decided to terminate water service, as of May 1st, for the property after five weeks of investigation. Before the decision was made, Canyonville Mayor Christine Morgan said she met with former Manager Rain Clark and former Assistant Manager Star Netherton to find out what was going on.

They were thrilled to see me and I kind of think they thought I was going to just save the day and I said ‘no, no I’m just here to tell you’,” Mayor Morgan said, “that’s when I said, ‘I’m here to tell you we are not shutting your water off today, but it cannot go on'”.

The city says the property owner, Emmert Canyonville LLC, hasn’t paid its water bill in five months. On February 9th, Emmert Canyonville LLC gave a closure notice to Forest Glen Senior Residence, saying its monthly expenses cannot be sustained by its monthly income. But Mayor Morgan says the problem is that residents don’t want to leave.

“They were telling me they’re going to dig in and weather the storm and they weren’t leaving,” Morgan said, “and I’m thinking ‘Well, how can you do that? You know, what right do you have to do that? You don’t own the building”.

Morgan says the city hasn’t heard from Emmert Canyonville LLC since a representative called to ask how much it owed the city. She says she feels like Emmert Canyonville LLC abandoned the property and the people living there long before it gave the closure notice.

“The conditions in the building, which is old and worn out, it’s not a stellar place for our elderly to be,” Morgan said.

As of March 18th, the city says 40 residents, 6 former staff members and 6 of their family and friends were still living in the facility. Morgan says three agencies are actively working to rehouse the residents.

“With the water being shut off, again, that moved that into an emergency situation, and so things will go quicker,” Morgan said, “Embrace Senior Advisors have told me we have places, but they’re being told they don’t have to move, that’s why we’re not getting any speed”.

Mayor Morgan says she doesn’t believe any of these folks will end up on the streets, but says the residents need to accept that they can’t stay there. She says the city really cares about these residents, and the city gave the residents water services until May 1st so they could get out in their own time.

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NBC5 News Reporter Lauren Pretto grew up in Livermore, California and attended University of California, Santa Cruz, graduating with a double major in Film/Digital Media and Literature with a concentration in Creative Writing. Lauren is a lover of books, especially Agatha Christie and Gothic novels. When her nose isn't buried in a book, she knits, bakes, and writes.
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