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Heritage House back in business

Heritage House Owner George Nerhan says his one hundred room motel is not only comfortable, but in compliance with city codes.

LITTLE ROCK, AR -- Heritage House Owner George Nerhan says his one hundred room motel is not only comfortable, but in compliance with city codes.

"We went to every room from top to bottom to make sure it meets the codes and went above the codes," Nerhan said.

Nehran gave FOX16 News a tour of his newly-remodeled motel. 

"We put all new carpet in, replaced the furniture, and the bathroom has been rehabbed totally," Nehran said.

He had no choice.  On March 29, a judge shut down the motel because of repeated electrical and safety violations. More than fifty residents had to immediately find a new place to go.  The owner said he went above and beyond what the city ordered. For instance, he's put deadbolts on every door for safety.

Nerhan said code enforcement officers visited Heritage House several times and knew he made the upgrades, but city leaders wouldn't give him a date to reopen.

"Finally last week, we made an appeal to the judge straight, and the judge was gracious enough to have an expeditious hearing," Nerhan said.

City Attorney Tom Carpenter said the city is not to blame for the holdup, even though the judge thinks so.

"If there's any delay in getting a hearing, it's because of the judge's docket, and I don't know why the judge got upset about doing his job," Carpenter said.

No matter the mixup, Nerhan is just glad he is open again for the people who can't afford rent or major hotel expenses.

"We try to keep our rates low and keep it affordable so people will have a place to go," Nerhan said.

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