- Associated Press - Friday, November 18, 2016

MASON CITY, Iowa (AP) - Cerro Gordo County health officials are revoking the license of a Mason City motel after receiving complaints about mold as well as electrical and plumbing problems.

Mason City housing official and zoning administrator Ray Quayle said there are numerous violations at the American Best Inn & Suites. Officials said complaints also include fire hazards and a lack of general cleanliness.

County health department spokeswoman Kara Ruge said guests at the motel were receiving mail at the property and using their own linens, furniture and appliances. They were also providing their own housekeeping, according to the Globe Gazette (https://bit.ly/2g2Bc6M ).

According to county health department marketing officer Kara Ruge, the motel is now under city regulation for health and safety since it is now considered a rental property instead of a motel due to guests staying there long-term. Ruge said people who rent a room for more than 31 consecutive days are not considered a transient guest.

Motel manager Robin Joines said a health report after a recent inspection was exaggerated. According to Joines, the motel owners plan to fight the city’s decision to revoke its license.

“We are not trying to be slumlords,” she said. “We want to fix these problems.”

The city has ordered guests to leave by Dec. 1.

Joines added that guests usually stay at the motel temporarily until they are able to find permanent housing, and now could be homeless as weather gets colder.

“Housing in Mason City is extremely hard to find on a budget,” she said.

Joines said if the guests die on the streets after leaving the motel, “it’s on their heads,” talking about the county health department.

County property records showed that Ace Ventures LLC owns the motel.

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Information from: Globe Gazette, https://www.globegazette.com/

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