Residents at Lake Kickapoo and Lake Arrowhead whose leases are up for review will be seeing a 20.75 percent increase in their leases.
Essentially there are two separate types of leases, the “New Generation” leases as well as what they call the “25-25” leases.
Lois Jean Rhea chose to move close to family on her daughter’s leased property by Lake Arrowhead.
“1999 I think I moved here, right after my husband passed away,” Rhea said. “And I had had friends who lived out here by the lake.”
Rhea said her daughter currently pays about $35 for each of her lots, but now with these new changes in the lease, she is concerned.
“I don’t think it’s fair, we moved out here because it was reasonable,” Rhea said.
However, city officials said an increase is necessary.
Property Administrator Pat Hoffman explains that the original leases have residents paying $36, $48 and $60 annually for a 50 year period but it is causing quite a strain.
“You will see the income was very very low, for a 50 year period we were never able to raise those leases,” Hoffman said.
Hoffman said because no changes could be made to those leases, the city has been “upside down in expenses”.
“Sending somebody out there for code violations, the cost of equipment, the cost of going out and emptying the trash, the mileage, and gas,” Hoffman said.
Rhea is concerned about folks like herself with fixed incomes.
“Well, I don’t think senior citizens can afford the higher lease pay that because we’re all living off social security and any other little pensions that we have,” Rhea said.
And she may not have to.
Pat Hoffman said in 2017 an ordinance was passed, geared toward senior citizens 65 and over who meet hud guidelines.
“Bring us their tax returns and show us that they meet those guidelines, then we take them into a very very low lease for the remainder of their lease,” Hoffman said.
Hoffman explains that in the “New Generation” lease, it was stated that every 5 years the lease will be up for review to for an increase.
The last increase was in 2014.
Hoffman said they are being transparent and residents are welcomed to come in or give them a call with questions at 940-761-8816.