Residents of Twilight Court in Quechee say the recent vehicle break-ins on their quiet street aren't their only problem. They also complain of a landlord who is neglecting the kind of maintenance needed to make their neighborhood clean and secure.
Located just south of Route 4 in Quechee, Twilight Court is a gravel dead-end street ringed with family homes offering affordable housing to people of limited means.
Residents say the neighborhood used to be well-maintained, with regular trash pickups and lawn-mowing. But, they say, that work has fallen by the wayside.
"Things have gone downhill quickly," said Diane Young, who has lived there six years and is raising her grandchildren.
When I visited Twilight Court on two days this week, I saw garbage strewn by the roadside, with some bags split open and flies swarming about. Patches of grass were growing unchecked.
The street also lacks streetlights, an absence residents say they are feeling after police say someone broke into vehicles on their street and nearby Sunset Circle early in the morning of Aug. 1, making off with more than $1,300 worth of electronics, cash, tools and other valuables.
"It's extremely dark here at night," said Young.
According to the Vermont Housing Finance Agency, the properties are owned by Quechee Sunrise, LP, and Rick Bove, and managed by Bove Brothers Realty in Colchester. According to a January 2018 VHFA memo, Quechee Sunrise won the right to claim a 10 percent break on the taxable value of its 22 rent-restricted units.
Deb McCaffrey, who is listed as the contact at Bove Brothers, said she didn't know much about Twilight Court and hadn't heard of the car break-ins. "Right now we don’t have a property manager down there; we’re working on it.”
She referred further questions to Rick Bove, the owner. He did not respond to requests for comment.