Friday, July 07, 2006

An Ill Wind

Our meeting started 20 minutes late.

The meeting that was confirmed mere minutes before I walked over to the office, the meeting that had been on the books for one month started 20 minutes late.

Oh yeah---The Lord High Executioner wasn’t even in attendance.

Lady Deathstrike, Bufford and I met.

It was, to say the least, not as productive as I had imagined.

I was hoping for a report on the city’s efforts to stop my bootleg developer’s real estate follies. Instead I was greeted with “there is no such thing as a developer’s license.”

Speaking verbatim, they were right---there is no such thing as a developer’s license.

There is such a thing as a real estate developer’s registry and an ordinance that any real estate developer must put his business license number on any and all advertisements, sales literature and contracts.

Six of one, half dozen of the other---I try not to get bogged down in semantics.

I even went so far to locate the press release from over two years ago on the city’s website to illustrate my point.

I was also told keeping track of my developer’s progress through the DCAP process might be difficult. Now I may be vague on the direct quote but it went something like “We have trouble getting answers in our own cases.”

I mentioned that financial relief from our developer seemed like a long shot as attorneys that would represent us on a contingency basis are still not within our budget. My main goals were to stop our developer from unsafe and safety riddled real estate development and to deal with the third party fine we now have in our association’s name.

While there wasn’t too long of a silence in the room, I had a feeling I was losing my audience.

Again I explained why what my developer was doing in the current context of his real estate development in my neighborhood broke several city ordinances concerning development and construction in the city.

Again, I got two sets of eyes that seemed to not fully comprehending why this was a problem.

I was told that perhaps it would be a good idea to put down these concerns in writing. So I did:


I wanted to be clear why DCAP should not grant XXXX current request for a building permit for the XXXX project.

Referencing the e-mail I sent yesterday, XXXX falls short on several key issues:

According to my FOIA research at the Department of Business Affairs & Licensing, XXXX does not have a business license.

Without a business license XXXX should not be able to apply for building permits as a real estate developer with DCAP. Quoting the Mayor from the press release, "ensuring that only licensed developers can apply for building permits, this helps improve the quality of building construction."

Furthermore, according the Business Affairs & Licensing's website, XXXX is not registered as a D/B/A (doing business as) for the XXXX, LLC corporation. A name that he has registered with the Secretary of State's office.

Unless I grossly misunderstood the intent of the ordinance, XXXX has not satisfied any of the perfunctory requirements of the ordinance. Moreover, he or individuals under his direction have done significant illegal and unlicensed construction to the building at XXXX. This obviously is in flagrant violation of construction and permit practices. Lastly, according to the County Clerk of the Circuit Court's Website, XXXX still has outstanding monies owed to the city. How can a license for anything be granted to someone who owes significant revenue to the city?

The research that I've done provides a credible and traceable pattern of real estate management and development by XXXX. That along with his lack of familiarity of the procedures central to his livelihood I find it incredulous that he is still allowed to operate.

XXXX has left a paper trail of questionable business dealings and practices that is difficult to ignore. If he is allowed to continue in this manner I fear for the safety of the condo owners of his future projects.

In my opinion he is as much a menace as a common criminal with a gun. Shouldn't future tax paying home owners be afforded every protection the city's legal system can given them?


The Woodlawn Wonder

How many more ways can I say that my developer’s practices are dangerous? How many more ways can I urge those who can act to do so before it’s too late?

Methinks I feel a definite change in the air and it ain’t for the good.

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