Complexes’ management under probe
Maryland lawmakers are requesting documents relating to multiple reports that Kushner Companies LLC, which owns several developments in Essex and Middle River, and its subsidiaries may be violating the requirements of a federally funded housing program operated by the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD).
According to a report released by the Baltimore Sun, the company has sought civil arrest of over 100 former tenants to due to alleged unpaid debts while the New York Times and ProPublica report that these units are badly maintained and in states of disrepair.
The Kushner companies own approximately 9,000 units in the state, with a majority being in Baltimore
County. For example, they manage the Carroll Park, Cove Village, Essex Park, Harbor Point Estates developments in Essex, Morningside Park and Whispering Woods in Middle River, Fontana Village in Rosedale, and the Commons at White Marsh.
The letter, signed by U.S. Senators Chris Van Hollen and Ben Cardin and Reps. Elijah Cummings, Dutch Ruppersberger, John Sarbanes and Anthony G. Brown, asked for documents and information on the names and occupancy of each property, the amount of funding and subsidies received by the companies, lease agreements for each residence, all civil actions filed by Kushner against tenants, and more.
“In addition, the New York Times and ProPublica recently documented how tenants who live in properties owned and managed by Kushner Companies enti- ties have experienced ‘poor upkeep, including appliance failures, mold, mildew, and rodent infestations,’” states the congressional members’ letter.
The Members asked Kushner Companies to produce, by September 8, 2017, the wide range of documents and information related to properties owned or managed by the company and its subsidiaries.
“If these reports are accurate, they raise very serious and troubling concerns about whether Kushner Companies and its subsidiaries are complying with HUD’s housing quality standards to ensure the safety and health of their own tenants,” the Members wrote.
“We are in compliance with the requirements of the federal housing choice program. We exercise our legal rights under the relevant provisions of Maryland law only as a last resort after all other reasonable attempts to collect rent payments are unsuccessful,” said Emily Wolf, general counsel for Kushner Companies in a statement.
The Morningside Park development in Middle River is one of several Baltimore County properties owned by Kushner Companies LLC.