Glasgow Daily Times, Glasgow, KY

Local News

March 27, 2014

Housing authority awards bid for meth lab cleanup

GLASGOW — A bid for the clean up of a rental unit on Bunche Avenue was awarded Thursday by the Housing Authority of Glasgow’s board of directors.

Two shake and bake meth labs were found at 612 Bunche Ave., Apt. B, on Feb. 9 by Glasgow police officers after being summoned to the residence regarding a drug and child welfare complaint, according to an earlier Glasgow Daily Times’ article.  

The bid went to Bio-Meth Management LLC of Louisville for $3,000. It was the only company to submit a bid by the deadline.  

Once the apartment is cleaned, it will have to be inspected by health department officials before it can be rented.

Sheri Lee, executive operations officer, doesn’t think it will take much work to get the apartment ready due to the meth lab being classified as a tier one level.

“There are three different tier levels in decontaminating a unit and were at tier one, instead of a tier three, so it doesn’t require as much,” she said.

The discovery of the meth labs in the apartment was a first for the housing authority.

“This was the first time we’ve had the active shake and bake lab in the unit,” Lee said.

One shake and bake meth lab was found in a bedroom closet, another active meth lab was found in the unit but the previous newspaper article did not state its location.

Those who were living in the apartment when the meth labs were discovered were evicted.

“The health and safety of residents come first. If there is anything going on that affects the health and welfare of the residents who live there, a three-day notice is given to vacate,” Lee said. “We did that and when they didn’t vacate, we took them to court and got possession of the unit.”

The tenants will not be allowed to rent from the housing authority again.

“That’s federal law about manufacturing meth. There is a lifetime ban with federal housing,” Lee said. “Trafficking is 10 years and manufacturing in public housing property is a lifetime ban.”

Housing authority officials do not need to actually see drugs or witness drug use to evict someone from a unit.

“It’s preponderance [of] evidence. We don’t have to have a conviction in court,” she said. “If our maintenance staff was doing an inspection, and they are in the unit and they smell marijuana and it may not be enough for somebody to get arrested, but it may be enough for us to file the notice to vacate and end the lease. We take them to court if they don’t vacate the unit.”

The apartment on Bunche Avenue is one of two apartments that will be available for lease again at some point.

The other one is the one that was damaged by fire on March 22 at Huntsman Manor on Jefferson Street.

Housing authority officials still don’t know the cause of the fire, nor do they know a cost estimate on the damage to the unit.

“We are waiting for the official report,” Lee said. “We’ve been in the unit, but we are waiting on the insurance adjuster to give us that information. I think he is waiting on the final reports too.”

Lee thinks the insurance adjuster is waiting to learn autopsy results of the tenant, 70-year-old Florence Watson, whose body was found inside the apartment by Glasgow firefighters, as well as for the state fire marshal’s office to close out its investigation before the unit can be turned back over to the housing authority.

Read more in the print or digital Glasgow Daily Times.

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