Cumberland Times-News

Local News

October 3, 2013

Displaced Frostburg residents in need of affordable housing

Diamond apartments dwellers assisted by Allegany County Dept. of Social Services

FROSTBURG — The Allegany County Department of Social Services is asking that anyone who has affordable housing for rent in Frostburg to contact their office so they can continue to assist the 19 people who were ordered to vacate the Diamond apartments.

“The biggest hurdle is finding affordable housing for the people who got displaced. It’s very sad,” said Heidi Hager of the DSS Resource Management Team.

The displaced residents can locate anywhere in Allegany County but most want to remain in the area because they work there and some walk to work, according to Hager.

DSS met with 10 households on Monday and, in conjunction with the Allegany County Human Resources Development Commission, were able to offer to pay the first month’s rent for nine of the households, according to Hager. Two of the displaced residents were able to find affordable rent and were relocated.

“All displaced residents were offered assistance and it’s pending until they find a place to move,” said Hager.

DSS also assessed each household to see if they qualified for other benefits and helped one displaced resident apply for food stamps, according to Hager. Some people were referred to the local food pantries for food vouchers and one displaced resident was given a Martin’s gift card because the food pantry was closed.

The Office of the State Fire Marshal issued an order for the 19 residents to vacate the Diamond apartments, which are located above Acropolis Restaurant and Diamond Lounge on East Main Street, because of alleged serious violations of the State Fire Prevention Code at all three locations. 

The order remains in effect until the building meets the requirements of the State Fire Prevention Code. Once the violations are fixed, another inspection will occur and the business could be up and operating within a few hours, according to Oliver Alkire, senior deputy state fire marshal, assistant public information officer.

Anyone with housing for rent in Frostburg is asked to contact DSS at (301) 784-7000.

Contact Elaine Blaisdell at eblaisdell@times-news.com.

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