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Caponi Art Park presents sculptures with a spook factor. See Thisweekend Page 9A. A NEWS OPINION SPORTS Thisweek Burnsville-Eagan OCTOBER 21, 2011 VOLUME 32, NO. 34 Opinion/4A Announcements/5A Sports/6A Public Notices/10A & 11A Classifieds/12A Burnsville cracks down on apartment complex Country Village racks up more than 120 property and fire code violations, city says by John Gessner THISWEEK NEWSPAPERS A Burnsville apartment complex that city officials say is guilty of more than 120 fire and property code violations won’t be allowed to lease any more units until the problems are fixed. The City Council voted Tuesday to suspend the rental license for Country Village Apartments for two months or until the complex is brought up to city code. Mold, pests, wiring problems, faulty plumbing, sagging ceilings and floors, soaked carpets, damaged sheetrock, nonworking smoke and carbon monoxide detectors and apartment doors that don’t swing shut are among the problems, officials said. “Squirrels in the attic. Lots of mice,” Fire Marshal Lee LaTourelle told the council. And cockroaches: “People gave them to us in a jar.” Council members were shown photos of extensive mold growing in units where residents live. Mold in occupied units is one of the many problems at Country Village Apartments, Burnsville officials say. Country Village Apartments in Burnsville has had its rental license suspended for two months or until numerous code violations are fixed. City of Burnsville photo Photo by Rick Orndorf “I don’t dare say what I’m thinking,” Council Member Mary Sherry said. “It’s wrong to do this to people.” Sherry said she’s read online reviews of the complex “that really broke my heart,” including one resident’s lament that she can’t afford to move out. “She felt trapped, and my guess is she is not the only one,” Sherry said. “I’m embarrassed there is a place like this in Burnsville. I’m mortified that there is.” City Attorney Joel Jamnik said the recommended penalty of a license suspension would have been “much harsher” if not for all the residents affected. License revocation – and eviction of all tenants – is “an option,” Deputy City Manager Tom Hansen said, “but that’s a very significant step to take.” Twenty-one of the 138 units are vacant, Hansen said. Residential rental licenses are renewed annual- ly in Burnsville. Council members said they want to see improvements at Country Village by the time its renewal comes before them in December. An attorney for Country Village owner Delores Lindahl told the council that Lindahl Properties LP See Apartments, 16A Economy fells another Burnsville Predatory offender fails to register in Eagan council member’s business Kealey surrenders retail chain, while Gustafson makes plans to start over by John Gessner THISWEEK NEWSPAPERS Burnsville City Council Member Dan Kealey’s usedmedia business survived the early-2000s collapse in music CD sales. Pivoting to video games and DVDs, the business then survived the Great Recession’s onset in 2008. But DSK Sound Inc. couldn’t withstand a second drop in consumer spending in 2011. In August, Kealey’s business was liquidated through an agreement with his secured creditor, M & I Bank. Now another lender, Wells Fargo Bank, is suing Kealey for $97,740 in unpaid debt Dan Kealey Dan Gustafson on a business line of credit. “This is a story about another business falling victim to the deep recession,” said Kealey, 54. He’s the second Burnsville council member whose business fortunes were upended by the downturn. Dan Gustafson lost his franchise with Concert Group Logistics, a freight-forwarding firm, in July 2009, and filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy protection in 2010. His successful petition freed him of $1.28 million in debts. Gustafson said Kealey has been candid about his situation, “and he’s been working his tail off, like I did, to save his business.” “He and I chatted a lot,” said Gustafson, who’s now planning a new venture. “He certainly has my support. You don’t ever want to see somebody ever go through anything like this. But unfortunately, between the two of us, we’re two of millions who are going through this.” Kealey said Chapter 7 is an option. “If I had to file, it would only be to discharge the personal guarantees associated with my business that failed at the hands of the recession, and for no other reason,” he said. Employed by Burnsvillebased Rixmann Cos. as director of new business development and community affairs, Kealey said his personal finances aren’t in peril, though he has flirted See Kealey, 7A Man charged with five felonies by Jessica Harper THISWEEK NEWSPAPERS ment on Oct. 16 to report that Levine had assaulted and threatened to kill her and that she wanted him removed from her home. Michael Upon their arrivLevine al at the home, officers found Levine coming from an attached garage where they found 40 marijuana plants and drug paraphernalia. Levine was arrested and is being held in the Dakota County Jail in Hastings. Levine has had numerous runins with the law. In 2003, he was convicted of theft of a motor vehicle, check forgery, disorderly conduct and theft — all felonies. A Minnesota man who is required to register as a predatory offender faces numerous felony charges, including failing to notify authorities that he moved into an Eagan home. Michael Theodore Levine, 27, was charged by the Dakota County Attorney’s Office with failure to register as a predatory offender, a pattern of stalking conduct, terroristic threats, a fifth-degree controlled substance crime and credit card fraud. According to the criminal complaint, Levine was living with an Eagan woman but didn’t update his living status with authorities, who believed he was homeless. Jessica Harper The woman and her mother E-mail went to the Eagan Police Depart- at: Now, that’s a birthday McDonald, who recently turned 102, still lives at home in Burnsville by John Gessner THISWEEK NEWSPAPERS Days after her 102nd birthday party, Phoebe McDonald’s well-kept living room was still decked out with cards and balloons. A couple of gift boxes of Abdallah chocolates – made by a company that’s been in Burnsville longer than she has – sat on the coffee table. “This is how she’s made it so far,” Julie Ekblad said, joking that her chocolateloving grandmother could “do a commercial for Abdallah’s candies.” McDonald still lives in the home on Dakota Court in Burnsville’s North River Hills neighborhood that she and her late husband, Paul, bought in 1968. Ekblad lives nearby, on General 952-894-1111 Distribution 952-846-2070 Display Advertising 952-846-2011 Classified Advertising 952-846-2000 & !""'!  ! $ Photo by Rick Orndorf Photo by John Gessner Phoebe McDonald, pictured with granddaughter Julie Ekblad, turned 102 on Oct. 14. Carver Court, in the house once owned by her late parents, Bob and Sandy Carlson. Sandy was one of McDonald’s two children. Her grandmother didn’t need much help living at home until about five years ago, said Ekblad, a daily visitor. Even after two cancer surgeries, McDonald did pretty well until coming down with shingles. She suffered a couple of falls in June, but was back at home after three weeks of transitional care. The 102-year-old now has a helpful roommate. Ekblad’s friend and fellow Burnsville High School graduate Kathy LaValle recently moved in. McDonald’s sight and hearing have diminished, and she’s never driven, so she appreciates all the help. “I’ve got to give all the credit to DARTS,” the nonprofit that provides senior services, McDonald said. “DARTS is just wonderful to me. They offer me help with my yard and my cleaning.” One of seven children, she was born in 1909 to William and Doris Crowe in their south Minneapolis home at 28th Avenue and Fifth Street. “On the kitchen table,” Ekblad joked. “No, sir – we had three bedrooms,” corrected her grandmother, who turned 102 on Oct. 14. She remembers the house getting coal heating, and later, electricity. “That was a big event,” McDonald said. “I don’t remember the year. We were young. We kept some of the See McDonald, 16A State Patrol troopers and other emergency response crews were on the scene after two workers were struck by a vehicle alongside I-35W in Burnsville Oct. 13. Both workers died. Two workers killed Oct. 13 by errant car on I-35W in Burnsville by John Gessner and Tad Johnson THISWEEK NEWSPAPERS Two electrical workers – a 47-year-old Ramsey man and a 44-year-old St. Joseph man – were killed Oct. 13 by a car that left the road and struck them alongside northbound Interstate 35W in Burnsville. The workers were identified as Craig D. Carlson and Ronald J. Rajkowski. The driver of the vehicle, Kirk E. Deamos, 21, of Raymore, Mo., was uninjured, according to Lt. Eric Roeske of the Minnesota State Patrol. Carlson died at the scene and Rajkowski died after he was taken to Hennepin County Medical Center. Troopers were called to the scene, just south of the McAndrews Road overpass, at 12:33 p.m., Roeske said. He said the driver of the car, a Mitsubishi 3000 GT, lost control and struck the workers partway down the embankment on the side of the freeway. He also knocked over a freeway sign. Alcohol wasn’t a factor in the accident, Roeske said. According to a State Patrol report, Deamos was driving in the left lane of northbound I-35W when he slowed for the construction zone. When Deamos felt he was too close to the construction wall, he braked and steered right. When the vehicle turned right harder than expected, Deamos turned left to compensate, and then turned right and spun out in the right ditch, striking the two workers. Roeske said it will probably be two or three months before the state forwards its completed investigation to the Dakota County attorney for possible charges. The accident underscores the need for driver See Crash, 10A

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