Teak Drive Residents Wait Longer For Answers

By Laurie Bernstein - bio | email

COLUMBUS, GA (WTVM) - Faced with thousands of dollars in uninsured damages to their homes, Teak Drive residents have all their hopes resting with the Columbus city council.

"We live within our means, but we have no savings, so if you only pay part of the damages, how are we going to get our house fixed to live a normal life, because right now, it's not normal," said Lisa Kuntz, who estimates about $40-50,000 dollars in damage to her home alone.

Things won't be getting back to normal any time soon, after the council decided to wait another 30 days before making a decision.

During that time, City Manager Isaiah Hugley will be creating criteria to determine which areas of the city flooded in the recent rains will be eligible for grant money.

Meanwhile, Teak Drive residents will be forced to stay in homes they call unlivable.

"We have nails hanging out of concrete floors, rotted wood, base boards ripped out and holes in the walls," said Annas Harris, another Teak Drive resident.

Some residents like Taniea Howard are worried for their families health living in their homes as is.

She says her four-year-old daughter Journey has chronic lung disease, and has been getting sick non-stop since the family was forced to leave their city-paid hotel room.

"I'm not happy with the results I heard today. I'm questioning if the city really has put themselves in our shoes," said Howard.

"It's not that we don't care, we do. We're just trying to get to it as fast as we can, but we are also trying to deal with everything around the entire city," said Columbus City Councilor Mimi Woods.

As soon as the criteria is ready in thirty days, the council will then make a policy decision for the recent flooding.

They hope to set a precedent for future rain events.

The policy will also apply to all areas of the city affected by flooding, not only Teak Drive.

Previous stories:

Mayor Offers Apology to Residents of Teak Drive
City allegedly knew about Teak Dr. water problems months ago