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AG’s Office closes Lincoln Manor bed bug complaint

News Photo by Crystal Nelson Lincoln Manor apartments is pictured here on Wednesday in Lincoln.

LINCOLN — The Michigan Attorney General’s office has closed a complaint filed by the Alcona County Commission on Aging asking state officials to investigate a bed bug infestation at Lincoln Manor.

Commission on Aging Executive Director Lenny Avery recently received an email from the AG’s Office, notifying him the office was “closing your file at this time,” but the state apparently did not say why.

“Our position is not a reflection as to the validity of your complaint,” the email said. “If your complaint has not been resolved to your satisfaction, you may wish to consider filing a private civil action and we suggest you consult with a private attorney.”

AG spokeswoman Kelly Rossman-McKinney said in an email to The News on Wednesday that she could not find Avery’s complaint and therefore could not say why it was closed.

She said, however, Avery’s was not the first complaint about bed bugs at Lincoln Manor. A previous complaint was filed in 2018 by the daughter of a Lincoln Manor resident, she said.

The News requested a copy of that 2018 complaint, but had not received one late Wednesday.

Avery expressed “severe disappointment” with the AG’s response.

“We have no idea why they chose to close the case,” he said. “It is not clear if they even reached out to the complainants — I’m the one who made the complaint and they never contacted me to let me know they were even investigating it. All we know is they were able to contact Prime Management, Prime responded with a letter, and that was the end of it.”

Prime Properties Management oversees Lincoln Manor. The management company did not respond to a request for comment on Wednesday.

However, Prime Property’s attorney, Richard Delonis, told the AG’s Office Avery’s complaint is without foundation, according to a copy of Delonis’s response to the state included in the state’s communication with Avery.

“The management company has taken the issue of bed bugs seriously,” Delonis stated in the letter. “It acted appropriately by not only having a pest control company treat the affected apartments, but also by having other apartments and areas of the building inspected by canines.”

Officials at Avery’s agency are frustrated they have had to suspend in-home care and cleaning services to seniors who live in the apartments multiple times for more than a year, with the most recent suspension of services lasting more than three months, because of the bed bug infestation.

The agency can only resume services once it’s provided documentation the residence has been treated, but Prime Properties has not provided any to Avery’s office.

However, Delonis told the AG’s Office residents in the apartments were notified Prime Properties would provide them documents to prove their apartment is bed-bug-free. He said none of the residents have asked the company for those documents.

Avery previously told The News he also has concerns the seniors who receive services could be targeted by the management company if they were to ask for such documents.

In October, Avery broke his group’s policy after three months of suspended services so it could give one Lincoln Manor resident a bath.

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