Watertown landlords request talks with city to address concerns

Watertown city council meeting wrap-up
Published: Apr. 18, 2023 at 5:43 AM EDT
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WATERTOWN, New York (WWNY) - Watertown landlords say that some of their concerns are being addressed but believe more needs to be done.

At a city council meeting Monday night, one landlord suggested a work session with the city to specifically address and work together on their concerns.

Trina Kuan is one of several landlords who’ve spoken at meetings over the past few months.

As is Ed Smalls, who says Watertown police have stepped up patrols. However, Kuan suggested the work session to further discuss policing of property damage claims.

She says one the reason rent is getting so expensive is because many landlords cannot keep up with repairs for damage done by tenants.

“You’ve got two families packed into a small, little three-bedroom apartment, because they can’t afford it anymore,” Kuan said. “The only reason is property damage is not being taken seriously. We would like a work session that we can use to discuss how, working together as a community, we can stop anger on the property manager and anger from property owners, anger from the tenants whose property landlord cannot afford to fix the leaky roof because other people have damaged their apartments.”

One council member, Cliff Olney, said he was in favor of having the work session.

Thompson Park golf ball

7 News has learned that the city’s lawyer has sent a letter asking for the return of the large golf ball that used to sit at the Thompson Park Golf Course.

What actually happened is still being ironed out, but some believe the former owner of the course, Mike Lundy, stole the ball, which was then placed, at Ives Hill Country Club, purportedly as an April Fool’s joke.

The city’s lawyer says they have communicated further with Lundy and the issue was to be discussed in executive session.

City court project

Meanwhile, a long-awaited construction project is set to begin on the courtroom at Watertown’s city hall.

The council voted unanimously to approve designs from GYMO Architecture.

The deal is for $85,000, which will be reflected in next year’s budget.