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Hartford city officials respond to tenant concerns about landlord

City officials say they were unaware existing tenants have been dealing with issues.

HARTFORD, Connecticut — City officials reacted Thursday after FOX61 uncovered tenants living in deplorable conditions in north Hartford, in units owned by a landlord recently selected by the city for multi-million dollar renovation projects along a long-neglected section of Connecticut’s capital city.

Advocates have tried to spur development along the Albany Avenue corridor for decades. Two major projects are now under way, but city officials said they were unaware existing tenants have been dealing with issues.

Andeleeb Properties of Bloomfield was selected to develop two major mixed-use sites in the Upper Albany neighborhood including the old police substation.

But two tenants said they have concerns about whether the city did its due diligence on landlord, Ace Andeleeb.

"This was the only responsive bidder and these are projects that the neighborhood had long aspired to get done, “ said Hartford Mayor Luke Bronin.

Tenants in this three-famliy home on Edgewood Street said they’ve dealt with years of negligence.

Jendayi Scott-Miller, an Edgewood Street tenant said, “Many of the problems have been since we moved in and have gotten progressively worse over time and now we’re at the point where there’s black mold, mushrooms, sewage.”

An April letter from a federal housing official listed more than 20 violations.

Bronin said city inspectors have been responsive, but the city will take a closer look across his other properties, which FOX61 learned have been listed in other family member’s names like this Texas address on an eviction notice.

“This is a company that has a number of properties that they’ve rehabilitated and done a pretty nice job of taking some dilapidated properties and bringing them to a better condition,” said Bronin. “And that has a number of properties, that as far as we know, have not had any significant housing complaints or enforcement issues.”

Councilwoman Shirley Surgeon said she was only made aware of any issues this week and wants to ensure they are addressed, “If we don’t have good living conditions for our renters, how do we expect our kids to do well in school? So, we have to provide a safe, clean environment.”

Surgeon said the city launched a new initiative and stepped-up efforts to inspect three-family dwellings earlier this year.

Housing advocates with the Center for Leadership and Justice who’ve been pushing for these renovations said they are planning to meet and discuss next steps on Monday.

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