Better Flip…foundation and sewer problems

In the News-Herald article, the Lake County Port Authority’s Executive Director, Mark Rantala, stated that the Better Flip project costs exceeded the expectations because of some bad foundation work.  So how bad was it?

We submitted a records request and received a stack of papers, and we mean a 3″ – 4″ stack of papers that we had to collate and create some semblance of order.

(Note to the budding community activist – the governmental agency must give you the records, but they will not summarize it for you.  The activist has to sort through the paperwork and try to make some sense out of the entire stack of papers.)

Well, we did the needful and created this summary of the quotation and purchase orders for all of the work done to the basement and sewer of the “Better Flip”.  We are not casting any judgment on the contractor that did the work- T. Dowhan.  They just happen to be the contractor that did the work.

Here is a summary of the work needed on the Better Flip basement and sewer: Summary of PO for Basement Work
The total cost was $91,080.00!

Here are the Port’s Purchase Orders to the contractor and the contractor’s quotation for the work performed on the “Better Flip” project.

Purchase Order 18110:  Better Flip PO 18110
Purchase Order 18115:  PO 18115
Purchase Order 18119:  PO 18119
Purchase Order 18122:  PO 18122
Purchase Order 18142:  PO 18142
Purchase Order 18149:  PO 18149
Purchase Order 19002:  PO 19002
Purchase Order 19066:  PO 19066
Purchase Order 19072:  PO 19072

The News-Herald, in their less than hard hitting article, mentioned that there are approximately 18,000 similar type bungalows that could use some or all of the “Better Flip” model changes.  There is one very obvious question that comes to mind.

How many of the 18,000 bungalows have the foundation and sewer problems experienced by the “Better Flip” home?  Has the Port Authority, and Willowick Mayor Regovich, unwittingly, provided a clue that existing homeowners, or future home owners will have a major expense on their hands if they try to implement the new designs?

We were told by a City of Willowick official that at least one new basement wall would need to be replaced because of the desire to add square footage to the house.

The “Better Flip” project was doomed to failure from the very beginning when their Board President, Art Lindrose, and Executive Director Mark Rantala did not prepare a budget for the anticipated costs.   The Port officials are unable, or unwilling, to tell the taxpayers how they arrived at the $150,000 amount in their initial resolution approving the project.

We welcome any and all responses from our readers or individuals that ‘flip houses’ for a living.  If you think that we are wrong in condemning our elected officials for spending nearly $300,000 on a bungalow that may be sold for $150,000, please let us know.

If you think that we are wrong in condemning the Port Authority for not preparing a budget for the anticipated project costs that they stated in their Board minutes was essential BEFORE they accepted the house from the Land Bank, please let us know.

Commissioners Cirino and Young, Willowick Mayor Regovich, and the entire Lake County Port Authority seem to be in complete agreement with this wasteful spending of the peoples’ money.  This is a political tactic known as “circling the wagons” to ensure everyone’s backside is covered, and no one takes the political hit to their career – just ignore, and deny any culpability and hope the storm blows over before the next election.

All the public really sees is the public relations campaign instituted by the Port, Commissioner Cirino and Mayor Regovich.  And when mixed in with the really shallow reporting of the two local newspapers that appear to be in league with the Lake County cabal, we can understand how the taxpayers can be easily deceived.

Do you know the real reason for the “Better Flip” project?  We do, and we will tell you in our next article.

 



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