A man who has been homeless for six weeks is being offered a rent subsidy by the town of Wolfville after he was caught in a dispute with his landlord and the Nova Scotia town.
The town council in Wolfville is offering Peter Brown a $200 to $250 subsidy for six months to help him transition to another apartment. They said the offer was extended Wednesday morning through Brown's legal aid lawyer.
Brown was forced to leave his apartment when the town ordered Nova Scotia Power to disconnect electricity in two buildings on the same property before Christmas. He had been living in a converted garage, separate from a big house the town condemned as a dangerous building.
Brown's bill was paid and his place wasn't part of the order to vacate.
CAO Josh Prycz said Brown's landlord was given plenty of notice to fix his property before the power was shut off.
“We feel it's just terrible that Mr. Brown has been victimized by a landlord who was given numerous, and I have to stress this numerous, occasions and months to remedy the situation in his building and did not do so. Which forced our hand to make an order to vacate,” he said.
Rev. Barry Morrison went to the town council meeting on Tuesday night to urge them to get Brown back into the building he calls home.
"I think this is an opportunity for the town really to shine and to show what we’re made of, in terms of a caring and compassionate community," he said.
Brown is the custodian at Morrison's church and for several weeks was living in the church basement.
He's now living with a stranger.
There have been various quotes on what it would cost to reconnect Brown's apartment. A new pole and wiring would cost close to $5,000.
"Since just before Christmas and now we're into February, the coldest winter in our recent memory," said Morrison.
"It's just a shame that through a series of misunderstandings Mr. Brown has had to leave his home."
Brown was not at the meeting.
Last week, Nova Scotia Legal Aid sent the council a letter, asking it to pay for a new power line to the cottage Brown was renting.