Jul 26 – Goshen – A unoccupied house on Main Street was found unsafe for human habitation during a meeting of the Goshen Council for Public Works and Safety on Monday afternoon.
Monday’s hearing included a property at 521 S. Main St. , owned by Ron Davidhizar, 203 Middlebury Street, Goshen.
According to Ryan Conrad, the city’s property maintenance inspector, the property was originally searched on March 4 and found to contain a number of violations of the city’s neighborhood preservation law.
Here is a breakdown of the five safety violations that Conrad referred to:
– Exterior wood is deteriorating and needs replacing, painting and making it weathertight;
– cracked and/or broken outside windows and doors are damaged and unsafe;
– The roofs of the house are cracked and the roof tiles are missing or broken;
– the outer walls of the house have holes, the ventilation holes are missing from the covers and there are bricks missing from the outside that allow rodents to enter the house; And
– Bricks are missing from the chimney and the chimney is not structurally sound or properly installed in the house.
Conrad explained that following the March 4 search, the house was searched again on April 1 and May 26, and both inspections showed no noticeable improvement in the violations mentioned.
As no progress continued, Davidhizar was ordered to bring the house into compliance with city law by July 30.
However, Conrad noted on Monday that a home search beforetime that morning revealed little action had been taken to repair the previously discovered violations.
Konrad also noted that he recently learned that Davidhizar has delegated repair work to the property manager.
“I spoke to him this morning, and he’s trying to make repairs, but what he’s doing, it’s not really what I consider work-like work,” Konrad said of the property manager. “When I did my first check up, it was March, and I worked with him as best I could. Because of the weather, he said it was still cold and snowy, and he wanted a little more time to do the repairs. But here we are in July, and it’s He just started making repairs a few days ago.”
As such, Conrad said he recommended referring the matter to the city’s legal department for enforcement.
When board members were asked about their options for moving forward in the case, city attorney Buddy Stiglman made a number of suggestions.
“The board can either persevere this hearing for a few weeks to donate Mr. Davidhizar a chance to appear, you can confirm the matter and donate a deadline for compliance with all of this, 30 days, something like that or you can refer it to the legal department for enforcement,” Stiglman said.
When asked what the enforcement action might look like, Stegelmann said the process would likely include filing a lawsuit against Davidhizar seeking either compliance or fines for failing to rectify violations of the law.
“And if he refuses, it is likely that a receiver will be appointed to take possession of the property, make repairs, and then bill the property owner,” Stiglman added of the process.
When considering the various options, the board members ultimately decided that referring the case to the legal department would be the best option, especially given Davidhizar’s recent separation from the property repair business.
As such, a motion was submitted and approved unanimously to find the house uninhabitable and refer the matter to the city’s legal department for coming enforcement action.
In other proceedings, board members:
A request from Dustin Sailor, the city’s director of public works, has been approved for permission to close the Indiana Avenue bridge north of Wilden Avenue for five days start August 2 to allow workers to close the bridge deck.
—A contract has been approved with Selking International to purchase the 2019 International CV515 SFA ambulance chassis at a cost of $77,100.
John Kline can be reached at email@example.com or 574-533-2151, ext. 240315. Follow John on Twitter @jkline_TGN.