Some organization needed here

Published 5:42 pm Saturday, November 28, 2009

Tom Bolton, a local developer, owns the old YMCA building on Broad Street. He says the building has deteriorated so, he can’t turn it into the mixed-use venue — condos and specialty shops — that he once thought he could.

Bolton hired a structural engineer to examine the building. The engineer, who was familiar with the building, said the structure could not be repaired. Bolton informed the city and went about the proper channels to demolish the building.

As he approached the Historic Commission, he received a letter from the Code Enforcement Department telling him he had to fix the building or tear it down or the city would tear it down within 31 days.

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The Planning and Development Department, which oversees the Historic Commission, didn’t know of the letter sent to Bolton. Now the department says forget the city letter, this is the Planning and Development Department’s matter.

Somebody needs to talk to somebody at City Hall. This is unnecessary red tape.

It would be reasonable if the two departments because they deal with similar issues would just go over a list or even give emails or share agendas for meetings to ensure this kind of cross up doesn’t occur.

On the outside, some mix-up such as this would lead one to believe that someone at the helm isn’t paying attention to their jobs — or that a department might have too many irons in the fire to keep up with all the tasks at hand.