Letter: Housing rules are being followed
In response to “Judgment day coming for Mulcahy’s housing fight,” in the April 14 edition of The Aspen Times:
Rick Carroll, I feel so blessed to have been given the opportunity to build my home by hand in this beautiful valley we call home. Sorry I didn’t respond in time for your article.
A few points:
1. APCHA is determined to force me to sell my home that I have spent the last 5 years building by hand. They have alleged a laundry list of “substantial” violations, one of which, apparently, has existed for almost 10 years. Yet APCHA waited until I completed construction to inform me of any violation and is now ordering me to sell.
2. Since I was fired by Skico in January 2011 (which APCHA claims it was unaware), I have done everything I could to pay the bills. I have worked several part-time jobs, which combined with my work as an artist, never caused me to doubt that I was in compliance with APCHA requirements.
3. Now, with my home completed, APCHA decides to commence an “investigation” into what I have been doing to support myself for the past five years. I immediately contacted APCHA to resolve the matter. Through a series of meetings and conversations, they first disqualified one of my jobs from consideration, then later disqualifying the second, while having no idea how or what I could show to have my work as an artist qualify.
4. I have worked as an artist all my adult life. APCHA finally determined what I needed to provide them to have my work as an artist “qualify” after they had made the final demand that I sell my home. Then they refused to look at the material they demanded.
5. Thomas Fenton Smith, APCHA’s attorney, states that I was given “numerous opportunities to come into compliance.” One of those “opportunities” was to simply follow APCHA’s direction to “open an art gallery.” I explained that as much as I would like to, I was barely making ends meet, so opening a gallery was out of the question. Exasperated, they then dismissively told me to “just get a real job.” So I did – in fact I got two more. I’ve been driving a cab and have been certified by the state to be a substitute teacher.
6. APCHA has also claimed that I failed to comply with their demand that I provide them with evidence that I did not rent my home. I explained to them that I had no evidence to provide because I never rented my home. It is a factual impossibility to prove a negative; that something did not occur. Yet APCHA demands I do just that.
7. Most importantly, APCHA now claims that I must sell my home because I did not occupy it as my primary residence and lived elsewhere. I received my Certificate of Occupancy on March 1, 2016. I could not legally live in my home before then; however, I have occupied it since, grateful to no longer be sleeping on neighbors’ floors.
Support Local Journalism
Support Local Journalism
Each donation will be used exclusively for the development and creation of increased news coverage.
If you don't follow the rules, your comment may be deleted.
User Legend: Moderator Trusted User