Two Aspen women bucking court, APCHA orders to move out of units | AspenTimes.com

Two Aspen women bucking court, APCHA orders to move out of units

Two women who are being forced out of their homes for not complying with the rules of the Aspen-Pitkin County Housing Authority in separate cases are digging their heels in and not budging.

The clock is ticking for Amanda Tucker, who was served an eviction notice by the Pitkin County Sheriff's Office on Friday. The Sheriff's Office has up to 49 days from the date it posted the notice to evict Tucker from her rental apartment at Aspen Country Inn, Pitkin County Assistant Attorney Laura Makar said.

Tucker, however, said Wednesday that because she has filed a motion to appeal a judge's ruling upholding APCHA's position that she violated eligibility rules, she has earned a stay in the unit, meaning she is not leaving while the case remains open.

Makar said that is not the county's position.

"Pitkin County has not received anything that says a stay is issued," she said.

Garfield County District Court Judge Paul Metzger ruled on Oct. 5 in APCHA's favor. The agency, which manages almost 3,000 affordable-housing units in the upper valley, claimed that Tucker violated terms of her lease by failing to provide the agency with qualifying information like income, assets and employment documents.

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In a separate matter, the APCHA board in September voted to force Julie Peters to sell her one-bedroom apartment on East Hyman Avenue for violating three guidelines governing the program.

APCHA contends that Peters failed to live in her unit full time, failed to work at least 1,500 hours a year in Pitkin County and failed to request a leave of absence when she went to Virginia because her parents fell ill.

Peters appealed to the board after she was served a notice of violation by APCHA in June, admitting that she hasn't been in Pitkin County full time.

Her vacancy in the unit was brought to the attention of APCHA by a neighbor. A voicemail left June 21 by the neighbor for Julie Kieffer, APCHA's qualifications specialist, stated, "I just wanted to let you know that Julie Peters has not lived in that unit literally for years. … The intent of that is for a nurse or a teacher or someone like she was to be living in the space. … It's a crime someone's not living in this unit. She was a teacher when she was able to buy it. Now a teacher is not able to afford anything in Aspen. It would be pleasant to have someone occupy that unit."

A property manager for the building informed APCHA in September that there were rodents in the unit and it wasn't kept up.

Peters asked the board for leniency while she worked herself into compliance.

But she did not receive that from the board on Sept. 5 and was ordered to list her unit for sale by Sept. 20.

Peters has failed to do that, forcing APCHA to turn the matter over to its lawyer, Tom Smith.

APCHA Executive Director Mike Kosdrosky informed the board last week that the agency will likely have to pursue Peters in court.

Neither Smith nor Peters returned calls seeking comment.

csackariason@aspentimes.com

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