Mount Vernon News
 
 
Officers with the Mount Vernon Police Department and the Mount Vernon Fire Department were making a sweep of rooms at The Curtis Inn this morning. Hotel occupants were being given one hour to evacuate as the hotel was being shut down for not having an operator’s permit.
Officers with the Mount Vernon Police Department and the Mount Vernon Fire Department were making a sweep of rooms at The Curtis Inn this morning. Hotel occupants were being given one hour to evacuate as the hotel was being shut down for not having an operator’s permit. (Photo by Alan Reed) View Image

By Mount Vernon News
February 7, 2013 8:20 am EST

 

MOUNT VERNON — The Curtis Inn was shut down indefinitely this morning and manager James Rhinebolt was arrested on a first-degree misdemeanor charge of operating a hotel without a license.

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The charge and arrest warrant were filed this morning in Mount Vernon Municipal Court.

According to the Ohio Revised Code, no one is permitted to “advertise, conduct, maintain or operate” a hotel without a license.

“It has to be closed; it cannot be occupied,” City Law Director Chip McConville told the News this morning.

Hotel licenses expire Dec. 31 of each year. According to the Division of State Fire Marshal, a renewal notice is sent out each October. A completed application, along with a fee ($110 up to 110 rooms and $1 each room above that) is required prior to the Dec. 31 expiration date.

Members of the city fire and police departments, as well as members of the Emergency Services Unit, went door to door informing residents the hotel was being shut down. Every room was checked for inhabitants.

More than six rooms were believed to be occupied but a definite number was unavailable.

“We have a handful of people I would describe as victims of circumstance,” Menapace said. He has been working with Interchurch to secure funding and lodging for those who were displaced this morning.

MVPD Capt. George Hartz said the residents were given an hour to remove their possessions from their room. Knox Area Transit arrived to take the residents to Interchurch Social Services for housing assistance.

Hotel owner Sucha Singh filed for bankruptcy in November 2012. Court documents show Singh lists the Curtis Inn, along with a second hotel in Hebron, as assets valued at $473,672. He lists liabilities of $1,192,551.

Amit Bansal, a co-partner of the property, told the News this morning the bankruptcy would not affect the operation of the hotel. As far as the closure this morning, Bansal said he was unaware the hotel was operating without a license.

The News was unable to reach Singh for comment.

News staff reporters Chuck Martin and Rhonda Bletner contributed to this story.

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