FOX47 NEWS - Power Restored to Mauston Apartments

Jeff Angileri
Aug 27, 2008, 9:40 PM

Alliant Energy turned the power back on for six families in Mauston, who've been living in the dark for nearly a week. It all started with wiring concerns.

We weren't sure where the meters were going to which apartments, and there was a safety concern of the overall electrical system, said Brian Yerges, Mauston City Administrator

The city had multiple safety concerns with the building, including broken windows, heating and air conditioning units, and a questionable garage roof.

They sent landlord Norm Gayda, who lives in Indiana, a letter in April detailing the issues. They were never addressed.

Alliant cut the power to the building on Friday, leaving multiple families - all with kids - in the dark.

I can't give my son a bath. My apartment is completely electric. There's no gas, said tenant Carla Powell. We have no way to store food. One of the other girls lost $500 in groceries.

Norm Gayda returned to Wisconsin Wednesday. He says he blames the previous owner for not informing Alliant of unit changes.

But Gayda admits he's owned the building for six years.

The city is concerned with what they call the landlord's lack of knowledge regarding the building's problems.

It's hard to believe if you own a building, you don't know how many tenants you have, said Yerges.

Regardless, they want the issues fixed soon, for the sake of the six families, including nine children, who live there.

Said Yerges, It needs to be addressed now before winter, and before a major event happens such as a fire.

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