GARDEN CITY, MI - Homeowners facing imminent eviction gathered outside Garden City's City Hall Monday, with support from the national action network, to demand answers from City officials.
"Kill the deal and kill the deal now," said Rev Charles Williams, the National Action Network MI chapter president.
These homeowners admit they were behind on their property taxes, but say they entered into payment plans. They are accusing the city of selling their homes to a developer without their knowledge.
"I've been living out of boxes... Do I leave?" Asked Andrea Rowe, a homeowner facing eviction. "It's not like we were sitting back and not paying anything."
"The developers came and cleaned up my kid's toys. Bill for $850," said Eleanor Ewald, another homeowner facing eviction.
Garden City's Mayor has said this is a way to prevent blight and avoid landlords who don't maintain their properties. Wayne County’s Deputy Treasurer Dave Szymanski says more than eighteen-thousand in the county use the payment plan and are successful. Only seven percent, he says, are non-compliant.
"One of the greatest and most devastating. Can't provide city services," said Dave Szymanski, Wayne County deputy treasurer.
Szymanski says these homeowners, although given payment plans, still did not comply with those guidelines.
"It's out of our hands, and they didn't perform," said Szymanski.
Asking for more time to pay, these homeowners say there must be something the city can do. After intense city council meetings, the city manager of Garden city said there isn't much that can be done, as the properties were bought from the county and have already been sold to a developer.
"We don't own the homes. Any compromise? I don't think so," said Robert Muery, city manager of Garden City.
These folks still say they weren't given notice and were told they'd have to pack their things, until a posting on their doors.
"It hit my credit so I can't get a home for three years. What do I do with my kids?" Asked Ewald.
A city council meeting is scheduled for seven o'clock Monday night. This issue is not on the agenda, but these folks say, they will of course be there.