Landlords sue day care over unpaid rent

Kiddie Kamp owner says business moved from Main Avenue location because of poor maintenance and upkeep

Steve Garrison
The former Kiddie Kamp building is pictured at 204 N. Main Ave. in Aztec is pictured on Thursday.

FARMINGTON — Landlords Marlin and Mary Nossaman have filed a lawsuit in district court alleging Aztec’s Kiddie Kamp owes delinquent rent at its former Main Avenue location.

The Nossamans claim in the lawsuit that the day care and preschool have failed to pay $148,400 in rent since breaking a 10-year lease in April at the business’ former location at 204 N. Main Ave.

“Our contention is that they breached the lease, and their obligation, and they still owe money under the lease,” attorney Gary Risley said today on the landlords’ behalf.

The lawsuit was filed Wednesday in the Eleventh Judicial District.

In April, Kiddie Kamp moved into a building on North East Aztec Boulevard that was formerly occupied by Hiway Grill.

Kiddie Kamp owner Renee Hutchens said today that the business moved from its Main Avenue location because of poor maintenance and upkeep by the Nossamans.

She said a heater at the building stopped working and would have cost $20,000 to replace.

“When we contacted the Nossamans to replace it, they refused,” Hutchens said. “The heater was giving off carbon monoxide.”

Hutchens said she had to install carbon monoxide detectors to ensure the children at the day care were not being exposed to the deadly fumes.

She also said the building lacked air conditioning, the sidewalks were cracked and the roof leaked.

She said she couldn’t move out sooner because it was difficult to find a building that was compliant with the state’s child care regulations.

“Our move and breaking the lease was a total effort to ensure the safety of the more than 100 children that we serve,” she said. “That comes foremost, above money.”

Risley said that under the terms of the lease Hutchens was required to fix those issues.

“Issues like that do not justify just walking away,” Risley said. “There are other options to address those types of issues.”

Risley said Hutchens’ allegations would be addressed at trial.

Steve Garrison covers crime and courts for The Daily Times. He can be reached at 505-564-4644.