Thursday, May 30, 2013

City backpedals on Willets Point violations

From the Times Ledger:

After one branch of city government issued several Willets Point business owners violations and shut down their body shops earlier this month, another branch will now pay to fix them.

On May 17, inspectors from the city Department of Buildings closed two lots housing several auto businesses in the Iron Triangle.

At one property, on the corner of 38th Avenue and 126th Street, inspectors determined a building had been illegally subdivided into five shops. They shuttered the whole group. Across the street, inspectors enforced an order to vacate issued in 2009 regarding support joists holding up the sheet metal roof.

The lots were both purchased by the city Housing and Preservation Department in 2009, records show, making the Bloomberg administration the landlord.

Immediately after the businesses were shut down, Housing told TimesLedger Newspapers that because the violations were issued to a commercial business, it would be the tenant’s responsibility to rectify the problems.

But after a group of business owners reached out to City Councilwoman Julissa Ferreras (D-East Elmhurst), the department did an about-face and agreed to bring the shops into compliance.

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