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McFeely: Neighbor gives ‘rest of the story’ in Detroit Lakes landlord dispute

A Detroit Lakes, Minn., woman gave what she called “the rest of the story” about a dispute that led to a landlord losing her rental license and a veteran losing his home.

Beth Reski-Olness posted on Facebook Thursday that “the landlord in question, is illegally housing people in a garage that the city never knew about” and “this has nothing to do with a veteran, which we knew nothing about until he announced it at the meeting, but it is about a landlord breaking the law.”

The Detroit Lakes Tribune reported that the city council voted to revoke the rental license of 70-year-old Laurel Carlson, upholding a city staff decision for a longtime rental unit at 327 Elizabeth Avenue. Carlson claimed the decision would cost her rental income, her only source of income other than Social Security. Also, the decision meant veteran Brian Fraser and his dog would have to find a new home. Fraser said he was recovering from a recent liver transplant.

Olness-Reski is Carlson’s neighbor who was cited in the article as speaking at the city council meeting in favor of revoking Carlson’s license. Olness-Reski and her husband are also rental property owners. She said the city asked her to speak at the meeting.

The posting of the story at the newspaper’s web site sparked online outrage at the Olnesses and the city council, particularly alderman Bruce Imholte, who told the reporter present at the meeting that he didn’t want to see a story about how the city council threw a veteran out on the street.

Reski-Olness’ Facebook post indicated the article in the newspaper was incomplete.

Read the rest at Mike McFeely's AreaVoices blog.

Mike McFeely
Mike McFeely is a WDAY (970 AM) radio host and a columnist for The Forum. You can respond to Mike's columns by listening to AM-970 from 8:30-11 a.m. weekdays.
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