MARYLAND

Power to be turned off for Blandesburg condo owners

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Hundreds of people face losing their power during the peak of the summer heat because of a squabble between a condo association and Pepco.

The occupants of the Parkway Condominiums building in Blandensburg are more than $90,000 behind on their electric bill. Hot or not, that means Pepco is planning to cut off the power August 8th.

“Pepco distributed notices Monday that the power was going to be turned off and that was the first inkling that I had that it was that serious,” said owner Mandy Rodrigues.

Residents fear the elevators could longer run and lights and air conditioning would be turned off.

“I will have to go to family and luckily I have family. I don't know what people will do who don't,” Rodrigues says.

Owners of the Parkway’s 108 units pay a fluctuating condo fee. The combined fee is supposed to cover the electric bill for the entire building.

Angry owners confronted the board members responsible for running the building and paying the bills, asking why Pepco bills hadn’t been paid.

“We don't have the money to pay Pepco at present,” condo board treasurer Dorothy View said.

Members of the board stated about 20 percent of the units are in foreclosure, and about half of the other owners are behind on condo fees.

“Right now I could put my finger on less than ten people who pay their fees on a regular basis,” View said.

Some owners did not believe the explanation.

“Even if people aren't paying, you have reserves to cover things when things like this happen, so where is the reserve money,” asked Blair Williams.

Representatives from Pepco were at the face-off between the board and the residents, but refused to speak publicly about their plans.

“There are delinquencies in the account and there are ways to deal with that,” Pepco representative Charles Washington said.

He talked with the board but it’s not clear whether they worked out a deal to keep the power on past Monday.

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