City Of Chickasha Wants To Move Residents Away From Lake

Thursday, April 28th 2016, 6:37 pm
By: News 9

The City of Chickasha is making plans to turn what they call a long time eyesore into a family friendly park, but not everyone is on board with how it's being done.

“I love living out here,” homeowner Kathy Martin said.

It's been home sweet home for about six years. Kathy bought it eight years ago to retire, but she says the city has retired the lease agreement she had with them and forced her to sign a new one.

“The part that has been difficult is not having control, because of the lease situation,” she said.

The property has been in her family for years, and she's the newest owner. Even though Kathy owns the house, she doesn't own the property it's built on and like everyone else near the lake leases it from the city.

Initially she says it was a 99-year lease, but in 2010 says the city came to her with a one-year lease, and the payment went from $400 to nearly $1,500 a year.

“Basically if you don’t want to sign the lease, you can leave,” she said.

City Officials say 99-year leases don't exist and that homes like Kathy's can stay put. However, those closer to the lake can't stay. They're working to make those spots temporary camping areas and not permanent home sites.

It's the beginning of their efforts to spruce up the lake and operate it more like a state park, by charging admission and creating walking and bike trails. The first phase of the project is beginning in early summer. It may be a nice boost to the area, but not to Kathy's investment.

“A 99-year lease, that’s basically a lifetime lease,” she said. “No one is going to buy a home on a one year lease.”