Charitable organization Challenger Charity Support (CCS) was slated to open a low cost grocery store on Wallace Street for low income earners ($30,000 or less,) early August; but, after signing a five year lease, new tenant and CCS President Kelly Fowler was informed by neighbours of a severe rat problem.
“We had already started painting and put a couple thousand in the store, and our neighbours told us there were rats a foot long in the building,” said Fowler. “So, we took loaves of bread and potato chips and left them behind — when we came back the place was torn up and there was rat urine and feces everywhere.”
Fowler opted to negate the terms of the lease he signed, and is currently being sued by the current owners.
“I don’t think it will hold up in court, I mean, we would get sued for selling food in a place like that — it would have been disastrous,” he told The Hope Standard
The building owners, who are from Burnaby, flat out misrepresented the property and left a bad taste in the mouth of a much needed organization in Hope according to Fowler.
“Hope really needs a place like this, but it was a big turn off, and we decided on Chilliwack.”