Apartments Residents Evicted For The New Year

In the wake of Katrina housing is in high demand. Apartment complexes, tent cities, and shelters are giving people notices to move out either before or right after the New Year. They were given one month's notice, by January 31st residents of McDonnell Square Condominiums must go.

"I went from homeless to hopeful and now I am back to homeless," said Lucille Bennett, McDonnell resident.

Bennett lost her home in East Biloxi after Katrina dumped 14 feet of water into the property. After looking around for a new home she found this complex and was delighted to get back on her feet. Bennett didn't realize that she would soon be forced to move once again.

"I just got settled in. There is no where else to live so I guess now I should look for a tent. I should find something positive. We don't have enough time there are no places here in Biloxi," said Bennett.

Apartment manager Robin Spence says he is constantly receiving complaints about mold and plumbing. So as a result he and his colleagues are sending residents to probably one of the only available, affordable housing complexes still left here on the coast, South Wind.

Spence says the complex was extensively damaged by hurricane Katrina. Repairs were made, but there is still a lot of work that needs to be done. Spence said in a statement to WLOX-TV, "It is impractical to keep putting a Band-Aid on the situation."

"If everything from East Biloxi to here is going to be turned into condominiums how can we afford them," said Bennett Kathlene Kemp lives in this one bedroom apartment with her husband and five children.

She has contacted FEMA and is anxiously waiting for a trailer. If she does not get one before the eviction date, she's not sure what the future will hold for her and her family.

"I don't know, just pray and hope God answers our prayers before the 31st," said Kemp.

"And its only getting worse because we have people coming out of hotels, off the cruise ships in a month or so. I just don't see where we are headed here," said Bennett.

Spence also told us that after the building's repairs are complete, current residents will have first pick to move back in. However, he says the apartment's value will increase and so will the rent.