Colorado board seeks to sanction Aspen design firm owner
September 19, 2017
The state of Colorado says the owner of an Aspen design firm has been representing himself as an architect without the required license and wants a judge to put a stop to it.
The action marks the second time since 1998 the state has had to sanction Jeff Halferty for the alleged misrepresentation.
Halferty denied any wrongdoing and said he is working with the state to correct the situation.
"We are looking forward to addressing this misunderstanding expeditiously," Halferty said in an emailed statement Tuesday. "Our office's attorney has been in contact with the Attorney General's Office to clear up this erroneous charge immediately."
The "complaint for injunctive relief" was filed Friday in Pitkin County District Court by the Colorado State Board of Licensure for Architects, Professional Engineers and Professional Land Surveyors. It alleges that no one who works at Jeffrey Halferty Design is a licensed architect responsible for the architecture services the firm provides.
"Defendant Halferty is not and never has been licensed as an architect in the state of Colorado," the complaint states.
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The complaint refers to an April 1998 agreement between Halferty and the state board of licensure ordering him to "immediately cease and desist" listing his design services under "architects" and "architects and planners" in multiple publications.
According to that agreement, Halferty agreed to provide the state board with proof that he'd corrected "all forms of advertising that might reasonably be expected to lead the public to believe that he is an architect" within 30 days of April 28, 1998.
Halferty said Monday that he'd complied with that order and changed any and all references to his being a "licensed architect" on his website.
However, the state board received a complaint in January alleging that Halferty was identified as "architect" in a professional services agreement he signed with an unidentified property owner in May 2016, according to the complaint.
"Defendant Halferty signed the agreement with the title 'architect,'" the complaint states.
In addition, Halferty's website makes statements that he "assists clients in building their dream home or business" and that clients "benefit from his understanding of code interpretation and execution," the complaint notes. Finally, his "Aspen resume" posted on the website refers to Halferty as an "architectural design professional" and his professional experience says he "oversaw multiple projects ranging from custom residential to high-end commercial projects (and was) involved in multifamily housing and historic preservation," the complaint states.
The website also notes numerous commercial projects around Aspen and the Roaring Fork Valley that Halferty worked on.
All of those things indicated to the state board that "Halferty held himself out to the public as an architect, in violation of the 1998 order," according to the complaint.
The state board is asking a District Court judge to issue an order forbidding Halferty from violating the 1998 order, representing himself to the public as an architect without a license and offering to practice architecture without a license, according to the complaint.
On Monday, Halferty confirmed that he's never been licensed as an architect in Colorado, though he said he's working on taking the exams necessary to receive the license. He also said he never signed an agreement with a property owner as an architect.
"It is a mistake," Halferty said. "It is a huge miscommunication."