By: Shannon Taylor, Press Reporter
The Dresden Board of Mayor & Alderman met in special session to discuss issues that the city’s building inspector, David Kelly had with Dresden 4×4’s storage units being constructed on East Main Street. Owner of the property, Jackie and Terri Lamb had come before the board previously to request a certificate of occupancy because they felt that the units were ready for operation, but the board wanted to contact Kelly and have a special meeting to obtain all information before proceeding.
Jackie expressed that the opening to rent the storage buildings was being held up by Kelly because of it not passing inspection, even though the contracting company that poured the foundation, Cole Builder’s, was willing to put their guarantee behind them. Jackie said that they had completed all requirements by the inspector, but that Kelly was still refusing to sign off on them.
Kelly stated that his issue was that the foundation had never been inspected and that he was never called to inspect. Kelly said he looked at the property last month and “I could see that the footing was not like it’s supposed to be as per with the plan that they submitted.” Several things were suggested to make that footing correct, including getting a stabilizing system and another option was digging down the side of it and pouring concrete underneath but Kelly had not heard from them. “I did offer that as soon as they got the footings stabilized and fixed underneath the structure as per code that I could give them a temporary certificate of occupancy for those areas.”
Cole Builder’s said that many issues were not mentioned by Kelly beforehand, but Kelly responded that contractors should know the state codes. They assured that the slab wouldn’t fail and could guarantee it for a year, but Kelly said that code states that it should be guaranteed for ten years which they stated they could guarantee it for, however Kelly said that he still couldn’t put his name behind it because it wasn’t up to code. Kelly also stated that the code manual states that the board can’t make legal decisions on code variances.
Washburn said that the board requested Kelly come to the meeting to discuss the matter and that they have had previous issues in the past with reaching Kelly due to the fact that Kelly works full time in Shelby County as their building inspector and only being able to come out on weekday afternoons or Saturdays. He stated, “I believe that you need to make yourself available if you’re going to be our building inspector to be up here and advise the people of what’s expected of them and to make an inspection on the day that these things are occurring. This might have been prevented before they started pouring that concrete out of the truck that day if you had been available that day.”
Kelly stated that no one called him for an inspection or he would have been available and that he has only been looking out for Mr. Lambs interest and the publics regarding the building being up to code. Mr. Lamb asked if he could be released from Kelly’s representation, but Kelly stated that he could not.
Mrs. Lamb said, “If we move it out of the city-you’re out of the picture, is that correct? If I move these storage buildings to the county-he no longer applies, is that correct?”
Kelly said, “That’s correct.”
Mrs. Lamb said, “Then what I may do, is this whole building may come down and I may move it out of the city and when I move it out of the city-I’m moving Dresden 4×4 out of the city. I’m moving Big Ram out of the city and that’s going to be it. I’m selling everything.”
Klutts said that she nor none of the alderman wanted Dresden 4×4 to leave Dresden and wants to find a way to figure out a resolution to the problem.
After more discussion, Cole Builder’s decided to dig up under the footing and leave it exposed for Kelly to inspect on Friday May 13th to see if it would pass code. That way Kelly can do the measurements and inspection.
Klutts reassured the Lambs that the board wanted them to receive a certificate of occupancy as soon as possible and that they planned to stay on the matter until the issue was completely resolved.
This is a developing story.