SOUTHPORT, N.Y. (WENY) -- A recent Southport Town Board meeting was filled with story after story from residents sharing how ongoing issues at Cherry Lane Park continually affect residents of the trailer park and it neighbors. Many pleaded with the town board to take action on the mobile home park during a Tuesday, June 13th meeting. 

“Which tenant himself told me that that mobile home was infested with mice and cockroaches,” said Sherman Avenue resident Tina Moore told the Town Board, “I've seen no exterminator over there doing anything. There's the trash from (one of the lots). That's the mattress I sent you in the email that still sits there. I'm assuming there was probably cockroaches in that too.”  

Moore was just one Southport resident sounding the alarm about the state of Cherry Lane Park. Moore says over the years she's lived nearby, she has witnessed fires, crime, health and safety issues, and even trailers even getting condemned. She said promises by an attorney for the property owner to make improvements have "fallen short." In her two-page speech, Tina called on the town supervisor, Joe Roman, to come up with a plan to address the problems. 

“I think a lot of your reasonings for being here today with the past agreement, in the past agreement you talked about if you didn't meet those requirements then you almost wouldn't disagree with the town to closing the park down and revoking the license,” added Town of Southport board member, Timothy Steed.  

At the last public meeting on May 9th, officials confirmed to a concerned resident the park's operating permit expired December 31st, 2022. Southport neighbors demanded to know why the park is still allowed to operate. 

“I have never had a rodent problem like I do this year,” angrily states Mary Davenport. “You guys were supposed to shut this place down by December. Oh, what's June? Joe, you lied to all of us. You all did. The only one that has been honest with us is Mr.Hurley.” 

Board member Dan Hurely, discussed his concern for Cherry Lane Park. He said cannot wrap his mind around why the mobile home park continues to operate.  

“I cannot understand why we dragged this out for another six months without coming to a decision on issuing a permit or not,” read Town of Southport board member, Dan Hurley. “The neighbors of this park deserve answers. They have relied on us to be responsible in our governance. I have no reason to believe the current owners have any interest in serious improvements, or that would been demonstrated during that one-year agreement.”  

Numerous trailers have been condemned after Sherman Avenue residents were told time and time again, they would be renovated. Many neighbors say that with it now being June 2023, those promises have been proven to ring hollow. 

“They were going to be completely gutted, renovated, and when finished, per Mr. Bruno's words, they were gonna look like a place that somebody would want to live in. Hmm. Uh, none of that was done,” Moore adds.  

The lawyer for the owner of Cherry Lane Park told the Town Board the owner tried to take some action in fixing the mobile homes. 

“There were a number of things in that agreement we did, there were a number of things we weren't able to accomplish,” Attorney Michael Bruno shared. “The primary one we were not able to accomplish was having the contractor come in and renovate.” 

Closing the trailer home park could be the next step if major progress is not made in renovating the park said Board Member Timothy Steed.

Jaqueline Cole said her significant other lives at the trailer park but recently had his home condemned and as a result, has to move out by the end of the month. 

“I have been there for 10 years; my significant other has been there for 12,” sadly shares Jaqueline Cole. “That night, when we served that paper, my significant other had a heart attack. Okay, so I'm trying to figure out what is going to happen at the end of the month.” She adds what happened that night: “Nobody is returning our calls and I am just concerned because now he has had a stroke, he just had a heart attack two weeks ago and he is in a wheelchair.”  

Out of all the trailers on the property, only 11 are currently occupied - several are condemned. Board Member Dan Williams said he is in favor of removing the condemned units, but also remodeling the inhabitable mobile homes. He shares the Town of Southport, and the park should have an opportunity to make the necessary improvements. 

“I feel those should be removed as quickly as possible,” said Williams to the board, adding “What we are looking at, is the potential by October 31st that there will only be six tenants there.”

Williams concludes by saying, “Financially it does not make sense to continue the operation without cleaning it up.” 

At Tuesday’s meeting, no action was taken regarding the mobile home, Cherry Lane Park. Dan Hurley’s full statement is available below.