Author Topic: Losing Springfield Plastics  (Read 23056 times)

strider

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Re: Losing Springfield Plastics
« Reply #30 on: May 09, 2013, 07:17:01 PM »
I went with Tom Metz to the appeal hearing in front of the Building COdes Adjustment Board on his condemnation.  To say it was a deck stacked against us is an understatement.  We, of course, lost the appeal and so the building is officially condemned and Springfield Plastics is shut down, maybe effective tomorrow. It was an enlightening meeting.

For the record, we were simply asking for a period of time to do the repairs BEFORE it was moved to the next step and the power cut, ETC.  I even had stated right up front that Mr Metz had need a kick to get going on the needed repairs. This was about time and keeping a business alive, not avoiding fixing a building that really does, and is getting, repairs.

A couple of points, MCCD does not have to really condemn for a specific item.  Once they see one or two things, they can call it the entire building.  And that will stick and quite possibly become a floating benchmark.  For instance, I said I was pulling a permit to fix the original issue - the bulge in the wall, and of course, the damage resulting from that.  I was told that wasn't enough, the entire building had to be fixed and it could take months to do it.   When I asked for specifics, Nelson Baird said that it wasn't his job to make up a work order for me.  I said that it used to be not stated as "all" or "entire" but this window or that door that was at issue.  He said not his job to specify repairs, it was my job.  But of course, as stated earlier, whatever I said I was going to do was not enough.  Ergo, floating benchmarks.

Some on the board also seemed to think that a building in such "terrible shape" does not have the protections of the historic designation.  I had to argue that it was even protected at all - apparently hearing that all contrubuting buildings within a historic district have protections went unheard.  In fact, one of the board members was shocked I got a COA for the repairs.  "They gave you one?" he stated in amazement, obviously very convinced by someone it wasn't historic. Or at least, didn't deserve a COA so it could be fixed (he did state he knew I had to get one though), which I though was the point of all this anyway - fix the building.  By the way, someone drove the Chairman by the building earlier today and he said after the meeting that was how he knew how bad the building was. Baird making sure he got what he wanted?

Electrical issues were a big thing.  Once stated, it became the main worry that a fire or something could be caused.  Even though I got the point across that all of the issues were on the second floor and the power was off, it was still a "public safety issue".  I am realizing that that is a very dangerous phrase.  Lots of bad things can be done in the name of "public safety". Most recently, the shutting down of a man's livelyhood in the name of...

Speaking of the man's lively hood, Mr Metz's stated for the record that he needed income from the now growing again business to fix the building.  I stated that PSOS was getting the community involved and that the permit and structural work was being done.  The chairman made it official and stated for the record the board had no indication that the work would get done at all.   I guess he wanted to be sure he was right and stood fast in his believe Tom Metz's business had to be shut down to help insure his proclamation would come true.

MCCD and this condemnation system has to be overhauled.  As it now, all it does is hurt people.  One of the board members said "Mr Metz, this is really for your own good." I spoke out of turn and said "Not if he loses his business because of it." 

At one point  someone tried to insist on an engineers report before the work was done.  Apparently, even though this was the board that makes recommendations about the building codes, having the building code say I could simply replace like with like isn't good enough for this self professed professional architect/ engineer.  I then said why don't we wait until the permit is pulled, the work done and passed by the Building Department, wouldn't that say it was done right.  By the way, the answer was no. He did move on to something about the rest of the building though. Still wanted that engineered drawing too. I asked as I didn't need that to legally do the required work, would MCCD/ this board pay for it.  I got asked, why should they? I said maybe because I didn't need it by law and hey, since the law says they can repair if the owner can not, they should help owners that can not help themselves.  I got told I was getting off subject.

A couple of times, two of the board members did make suggestions about maybe just condemning part of the building and allowing Mr. Metz to continue his business, but Nelson Baird and the Chairman squashed those ideas pretty quickly.

Bottom line, it is for "public safety" that the building is condemned. MCCD would feel just terrible if someone got hurt.  Besides, the Chariman thinks it won't get fixed anyway ....

Typical MCCD and their minions - hinder at all costs.

The one positive point was Nelson Baird stating for the record no more demolitions in Springfield unless by very obvious emergency - like you could actually blow the building down.   Wonder why that is?

Wait until MCCD gets a load of what happens next.
"My father says that almost the whole world is asleep. Everybody you know. Everybody you see. Everybody you talk to. He says that only a few people are awake and they live in a state of constant total amazement." Patrica, Joe VS the Volcano.

movedsouth

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Re: Losing Springfield Plastics
« Reply #31 on: May 09, 2013, 07:33:59 PM »
Thanks for going. Are there any engineers on the review board? Has any of the members looked at the house first hand?


JaxUnicorn

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Re: Losing Springfield Plastics
« Reply #32 on: May 09, 2013, 08:54:04 PM »
Very interesting indeed...I've heard of Special Master hearings to address repairs that are required, but have never heard of the Building Code Adjustment Board.  What exactly is this Board and why wasn't Mr. Metz given an opportunity to fix the building after being cited?  Was this his first MCCD citation?

When MCCD uses terms such as "all" and "entire" then they damn well SHOULD state specifically what that means, otherwise how is a property owner supposed to know what MCCD is requesting be fixed?  Nelson Beard is once again trying to bully his way around - like he did when he "demanded" access to the interior of my houses (which I declined) and threatened to get a warrant (for which they had no grounds).

These MCCD people are not contractors or engineers.  What exactly are their qualifications to be making these type of decisions?  And does the city ordinance really give MCCD this much power without ANY TYPE OF PROOF??  Sounds to me like MCCD's decision to condem this property is based purely on opinion and not fact.

Very sad indeed....
Kim Pryor...Historic Springfield Resident...PSOS Founding Member

iloveionia

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Re: Losing Springfield Plastics
« Reply #33 on: May 09, 2013, 09:21:04 PM »
I am curious about the data.
How many appeals have been heard and denied?
100%?
What's the vendetta? 
I am glad to hear the continued "no more demos in Springfield" however what they did and said today was crap.  They are not judge and jury.  The owner shows up with contractor and is denied?  Not even given 30 days?  Where is this policy of practice written?  Or are we talking fly by the seat of the pants practice?


ricker

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Re: SAVING Springfield Plastics
« Reply #34 on: May 09, 2013, 09:42:15 PM »
Thanks to some great folks in the community along with Mr.Metz' family for rallying around him, and this great building!

In the recent past the upstairs has been utilized as creative space, largely painting, steadily by a few successful local artists, and occasionally by others passing through.  I am very excited for Mr.Metz and perhaps the necessary repairs will be the needed good in the end.

Disheartening to hear someone who is trying to do the right thing and comply while being spoken down to with such condescension.

Nevertheless, one thing Mr.Metz has is a huge heart and moreover this building IS worth saving and is NOT beyond repair.

With the arrival of the candy shop down the block a couple doors this area holds even greater potential with the increased traffic.

Strider, email me your phone, or get my # from Tom.
Call me, text me.
Let me know what I can do to help.
« Last Edit: May 09, 2013, 11:39:39 PM by ricker »

sheclown

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Re: Losing Springfield Plastics
« Reply #35 on: May 10, 2013, 05:55:28 PM »
Tom had substantial structural work done a little while back.  He is currently reaching out to the structural engineer who worked with him then to see if he can help out.


m74reeves

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Re: Losing Springfield Plastics
« Reply #36 on: June 08, 2013, 02:29:06 AM »
Any updates on this? Has this owner lost use of this for work and home?
"Everyone has to have their little tooth of power. Everyone wants to be able to bite." -Mary Oliver

strider

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Re: Losing Springfield Plastics
« Reply #37 on: June 08, 2013, 08:41:06 AM »
As of May 9th, Mr. Metz lost the right to continue his business at that location.  The power was cut a few days later. He is lucky to have the right to enter it at all.  MCC makes it very difficult to even do what they themselves ask of the owners, repair the building.

At this point, he is confused, as are many owners who find themselves dealing with Municipal Code Compliance.  He gets conflicting information from us, from MCC and even from the engineer he hired.  Few of the engineers I have dealt with seem to understand the nature of working on a Contributing Historic Structure and MCC doesn't want to nor do they make the distinction.  Meanwhile, Mr. Metz's family is doing what they can to help and we are waiting for everyone involved to figure out what they want to do.
"My father says that almost the whole world is asleep. Everybody you know. Everybody you see. Everybody you talk to. He says that only a few people are awake and they live in a state of constant total amazement." Patrica, Joe VS the Volcano.

m74reeves

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Re: Losing Springfield Plastics
« Reply #38 on: June 08, 2013, 09:19:14 AM »
This is so outrageous it makes my head spin. I have recently moved to Jacksonville, and I am so disappointed by this. I have just joined the Preservation SOS and hope that there may be some way I can help out.
"Everyone has to have their little tooth of power. Everyone wants to be able to bite." -Mary Oliver

JaxUnicorn

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Re: Losing Springfield Plastics
« Reply #39 on: June 08, 2013, 05:26:18 PM »
This is so outrageous it makes my head spin. I have recently moved to Jacksonville, and I am so disappointed by this. I have just joined the Preservation SOS and hope that there may be some way I can help out.
Welcome to PSOS m74reeves!!!  You will find it both frustrating and satisfying at the same time.  Look forward to getting to know you.
Kim Pryor...Historic Springfield Resident...PSOS Founding Member

strider

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Re: Losing Springfield Plastics
« Reply #40 on: June 19, 2013, 12:26:08 PM »
An interesting bit of information.   On May 29, and I think not received until yesterday, Tom was also cited for " The above Referenced property is cited as an unsecured/ unguarded vacant building and therefore is a nuisance violation of the local ordinance."  I just find it interesting that Mr. Nelson Beard found it necessary to cite a building because it is vacant BECAUSE HE CONDEMNED IT.  He also mailed it to the condemned and now vacant building. He did use one of the buildings other addresses however, so perhaps that makes it all OK?



« Last Edit: June 19, 2013, 12:35:48 PM by strider »
"My father says that almost the whole world is asleep. Everybody you know. Everybody you see. Everybody you talk to. He says that only a few people are awake and they live in a state of constant total amazement." Patrica, Joe VS the Volcano.

mbwright

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Re: Losing Springfield Plastics
« Reply #41 on: June 19, 2013, 02:04:39 PM »
really sad.  Another Historic building without a chance. :'(

strider

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Re: Losing Springfield Plastics
« Reply #42 on: June 19, 2013, 03:47:19 PM »
That's the issue really.  The behavior and methods used by Ms Scott and her staff do nothing but intimidate and cause the eventual loss of hope.  What possible reason did they have to add a citation for a building being vacant onto a building they caused to be vacant except further intimidation? And intimidating the owner for what reason?  To insure another building comes down? And why can a city employee and her staff get away with that? It is hard not to ask how they are profiting from all this.
"My father says that almost the whole world is asleep. Everybody you know. Everybody you see. Everybody you talk to. He says that only a few people are awake and they live in a state of constant total amazement." Patrica, Joe VS the Volcano.

Ralph W

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Re: Losing Springfield Plastics
« Reply #43 on: June 19, 2013, 05:08:58 PM »
Was this forwarded to Councilwoman Daniels? Or anyone else, for that matter? One more document to offer as proof that this department is disconnected from reality and not firing on all cylinders.

sheclown

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Re: Losing Springfield Plastics
« Reply #44 on: June 19, 2013, 06:16:52 PM »
Is it only me that is fearful of Kim Daniels being the person that is becoming the figurehead for this historic home/building situation?


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