Zorbalas - a Different Sort of Class Act

I know for a fact I wasn't the only person who got a lil' fired up after reading Jonathan Kaminsky's piece on The Slumlord of South Minneapolis, Spiros Zorbalas.

After reading about Spiros Zorbalas' exploitation of low income residents in rental properties in my neighborhood, I contacted Sara Hagestad at Family and Children's Services to learn more about her efforts to clean up Zorbalas' act, once and for all.

She recently emailed me an update of their activities regarding Zorbalas:

I wanted to give you an update! The meeting on Feb. 14 with Bryan Tyner (Mpls Fire Marshal) sounded like it went well. He seems very eager to help out, get inspections done promptly, and deal with some of the matters personally. His demeanor is nice, approachable, and cooperative. Since I was out of town, I was not at the meeting. My intern has the notes and I will get them from her tomorrow and then send everyone those so they know what went on.

We are still working towards a possible class action lawsuit regarding the move out fees that are assessed to damage deposits resulting in tenants not usually getting much if any of their deposits back. I’ve got a couple legal entities that we are in communication with about this.

I’ve been talking with a few tenants about the possibility of a public rally or something on the steps of City Hall to demand that City Officials start taking this seriously and doing something about it.[...].
there has to come a time when the situation is so special that more urgent courses of action need to be considered.

So, that’s the update for now. If I haven’t already done so, I might direct you to the
UPi tenants’ website. They created this as a way to publicize news and updates as well as have it be a resource for tenants’ rights information. Here is the site:


The faster and further we can continue to spread the word about what’s going on, the better, so I appreciate it [the blog post]. Thanks much and I’ll be in touch!

Sara Hagestad, MSW, LGSW

Community Organizer

Family and Children's Service

I like the idea of a public rally...I wonder if other Longfellons and E Lake Street neighbors would participate.

[where: Minneapolis, E. Lake St., Longfellow 55406]

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