Trailer park in trouble License renewal delayed over taxes

August 22, 1993|By Phyllis Brill | Phyllis Brill,Staff Writer

The Reeds at Bayview, a mobile home park in Edgewood that has been plagued with financial problems, has had its operating license withheld by Harford County for failure to pay excise taxes and water and sewer bills.

The mobile home park in the 3000 block of Pulaski Highway was the only one of 29 parks in the county that did not pass inspection this year, said Richard Lynch of the county's Department of Inspections, Licenses and Permits. Mr. Lynch, chief of housing services, reviews the mobile home parks and renews operating licenses July 1.

In an administrative hearing Thursday, county officials reviewed with park owner John P. Seisman their reasons for withholding the license. The hearing was conducted by Thomas Dick, acting director of the Department of Inspections, Licenses and Permits.

Mr. Dick can revoke the license or reissue it. He is expected to make a decision within 30 days.

County lawyer Diane Swint told the hearing examiner that Mr. Seisman is in arrears $3,150 in excise tax and $12,258 in water and sewer bills. Besides its outstanding bills, the park was cited for failure to complete landscape plans, failure to obtain a required building permit and misrepresentation in sales


Mr. Seisman is president of John Philip Inc., which owns and operates The Reeds at Bayview. The company filed for bankruptcy protection under Chapter 11 in November 1991.

Mr. Seisman said that his tenants are more than $6,800 behind in paying for water and sewer charges. The county issues a single water bill for the whole park, and residents do not have individual water meters on their lots.

Mr. Seisman divides the bill equally among the occupied lots, residents said.

The park has 93 lots, about half of which are occupied.

Mr. Seisman said that since he defaulted on the mortgage in 1991, he does not handle money collected from the tenants.

John Nowicki, his attorney, said the park's bills are paid by the mortgage lender, which took over collection of rents when Mr. Seisman defaulted.

But Bruce Harris, an attorney representing HFC Commercial Realty, the lender, said it is not his client's responsibility to ensure that tenants pay their bills.

"HFC Commercial Realty is there to collect money and ensure that it's applied to the loan obligation. It remits whatever it collects [in water and excise tax payments] to the county. It's not my client's role to knock on tenants doors and tell them they're behind and they should pay."

Ms. Swint noted that a preliminary landscaping plan for the park was approved in 1988 and a more detailed plan in March 1992, "but little of the work has been done." The plan called for a wall of plants and shrubbery along the front of the park and shade trees and other plantings in the interior.

Most of the planting in the front has been completed, but none of theinterior work has been done, she said.

Mr. Seisman said he delayed the interior landscaping "until all the homes were on their sites so that the planting wouldn't get in the way of placing homes."

Mr. Lynch of DILP noted that the county's concern over #i misrepresentation in sales practices stemmed from more than a dozen complaints made to him by residents and would-be residents of the park who have bought homes through Manufactured Housing Discounted, an Edgewood distributorship run by Mr. Seisman.

Buyers, some of whom purchased homes more than a year ago, say they have not yet received all that they paid for. Mr. Lynch said at least two complaints were from would-be tenants who have paid in full for homes that were never delivered.

He said that some of the complaints against the park owner have been referred to the Consumer Protection Division of the state attorney general's office and to the county state's attorney's office.

County officials say the withheld license will not affect tenants in the park, but will prevent Mr. Seisman from obtaining any more permits, which are required to place homes on lots in the park.

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