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I-Team follow up: Tenants file claims regarding mandated internet subscription

I-Team follow up: tenants file complaints regarding internet service requirement
Published: May. 4, 2022 at 5:44 PM CDT
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SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (Dakota News Now) -If you were asked to pay more per month for a slower internet connection, would you accept the offer? Angry tenants say they’d like to pass, but a letter mandates the change. Barry Longden shared his frustration Tuesday.

“It feels like they’re strong-arming us into paying a rate that isn’t equitable for the internet that we’re getting either,” said Longden.

We’re hearing from more residents of Dakota Pointe, West Pointe Commons, and Whisper Ridge, owned by Cornerstone residential of Utah.

Tenant Michele Powel researched the legality of the internet requirement and believes she found an answer.

“I found out that it’s not. In February 2022, the FCC issued an order,” said Powel.

She’s filed complaints on local and federal levels.

“The city of Sioux Falls; I sent them the notice. I sent the State Consumer Affairs a notice, and then the FTC notice,” said Powel.

This isn’t the first time she’s advocating for herself as their tenant. When there was an announcement of a new fee to park in the apartment’s parking lot, she took action.

“I called the city and I was told that was illegal and they will be contacting them so I’m assuming that’s why we never got anything about having to pay to park,” said Powel.

Another tenant, upset about the mandatory internet subscription and fee called our I-team after getting off the phone with the FCC saying their complaint is being expedited.

The service will come from Midco, but they never intended for their name to be included in the plan. Director of Corporate Communications Paige Pearson Meyer explains.

“We sell bulk internet to the apartment building owners or contractors. How they distribute and charge for it as an amenity to their tenants is not within our control. While Midco is the underlying provider of service, it’s unfortunate that the contractor in this situation improperly used our name which implied our awareness and support. They have since removed our name from their communications and apologized. We certainly empathize with the tenants’ frustration,” said Pearson Meyer.

The Better Business Bureau lists seven complaints against Cornerstone Residential, the majority of those complaints are listed as resolved because the tenant moved out. Powell is planning her exodus as well.

“Yes I am,” said Powel. “When my lease is up, yes.”

Our I-Team has reached out to Cornerstone for additional comment and has not received a response.

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