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To assume may make one a donkey

by Bill Knowles
WALSENBURG- A series of assumptions and failures to communicate coupled with a clearly defined set of actions has resulted in two Huerfano County residents having to live with a bad roof for over a year.
MD Clark and Don Lovering spoke to the Huerfano County Regional Building Authority Board (HCRBAB) over a year ago about a contractor who had worked on the roof of Clark and Lovering’s residence. According to Clark, the job was shoddy, and he wanted Drury Brothers Roofing to repair their work at the time.
Clark said that after several unsuccessful attempts to work out the problem with the contractor, he took his case to the HCRBAB in June of 2010. “The board sent a notice to the Drury Brothers informing them that a complaint had been filed and their license was on hold until the situation could be resolved,” Clark said.
At a special meeting which included a representative from Drury Brothers Roofing, Clark and the regional building authority, the representative indicated that he was unaware of the problems. He said he was not aware even though an attorney for the contractor on the Clark job had sent the roofers certified letters which included descriptions and photographs of the damage and poor workmanship to the roof.
Even after the special meeting and an inspection of the roof followed by promises that the company would return and fix the damage, nothing happened. Finally Clark called in his own attorney which led to a settlement with the company’s insurance company in the spring of 2011.
According to the minutes of the June 21, 2010 special meeting, both parties were to inform the board by letter if an agreement was reached. Neither party did until Clark spoke with the board during the June 11, 2011 meeting. Those same minutes reflect that the Drury Brothers representative admits that Clark’s roof reflected shoddy workmanship.
Clark assumed that the company’s license to work in Huerfano County was still on hold following the settlement. He never attempted to communicate with the building authority ­“Because my roof was still not fixed,” he said.
But the company’s license had not been pulled or suspended because they had expressed a desire to settle the matter. The complaint had been lodged and was noted in their file.
And the Huerfano County Regional Building Authority assumed that because they had not heard from Clark or the company in nearly a year, the roof had been fixed and all was well.
The Drury Brothers’ license to work in the county was renewed by the regional building authority in January for 2011. They recently received a $250,000 contract to replace the roof on the La Veta high school building.
This event highlights a need. The building authority must define a policy that would prevent license renewals if a complaint were still pending against a company or individual subcontractor.
“We need to tag the file so when we pull it to look into a renewal, a company would have to show progress in addressing a complaint,” Tracy Webb said.
Clark is still without a good roof more than a year since he first had to deal with the problem and has been looking for a contractor who will fix it.