Wednesday, June 15, 2016

Digging a little deeper into ARB and 417 Government Street

Below is the package submitted to the ARB for 417 East Government Street.

Observations from the Package

  • The meeting was July 10, 2014
  • Carter Quina, ARB board member, requested the approval.
  • The plans state "Quina Grundhoefer Architects"
  • The plans state that the plans are for Mark and Lisa Greskovich
  • The plans detail the house to be "reconstructed"
  • Congressional candidate Elizabeth Schrey was the staff contact.
  • The minutes state it was approved unanimously.

  • Until 12/31/2014, the property was owned by Angela Elizabeth Denmon not Mark and Lisa Greskovich as represented by Carter Quina to the Board in July of 2014
  • The property was approved for demolition and reconstruction of an identical house.
  • The property was purchased on 12/31/2014 by Judith A Galbavy who owns the property directly behind the 417 E Government property at 414 E. Zarragossa for $282,000.
  • The property at 414 E. Zaragoza was presented to the ARB on February 21, 2013 as a Bed and Breakfast on the Zaragoza lot only Agenda/02242013-65
  • On April 23, 2014, the Galbavy's commenced the construction of their "new home" at 414 E. Zarragossa
  • Mr. Quina knew that the applicant was not the homeowner of 417 E Government.  Why wasn't the homeowner required to make the demolition application to the ARB instead of the "potential buyers"?
  • Who filed for the demolition application with City permitting, the homeowner or potential buyers?
  • How do you get approval to demolish and rebuild and NOT REBUILD?
  • Isn't A dependent on B?
  • When Quina saw the sale of the house would not go through, why did he let the demolition occur?
  • How does Quina get to vote on a project that he is architect for?
  • Has he ever voted no on one of his own plans?  It s self licking lollypop!
  • Don't Florida statutes have a clause about voting on matters that "enure" to the benefit of the public official?
  • Between approval to demolish on July 10, 2014 and sale on December 31, 2014, what happened to the "demolish and reconstruct"?
  • Why is the new property owner not required to complete the reconstruction? 
  • When is follow up done by the City to ensure the entire process was completed?

Looks like initially I need to research some "shooby dooing" in the ARB.

Where is Elizabeth Schrey on this one?  Elizabeth, your name is on it?  Can you shed some light?


Anonymous said...

Pensacola has a long history of "shooby-doing," but this case is probably better described as "shooby-doing on steroids." Here are some of the glaring items that were overlooked by the Architectural Review Board. There is little doubt that the overlooking was intentional, seeing as how the request came from a Special Snowflake.

1. It is clear from the photos that the existing structure was in decent condition and was certainly salvageable. The "new" renderings presented by Carter Quina show that his intention was to build a larger house. No doubt that is what his client wanted in lieu of the quaint cottage that existed. This would, of course, come with a larger FEE for Quina.

2. Applications to the ARB should ALWAYS be made by the actual property owners and not by third parties. I find it to be unbelievable that the ARB would allow an application by a third party.

3. Approval of the application should have come with a rider to the property that required that the promises made by Quina were actually performed. This rider should have been recorded by the Clerk of Court.

4. Yes, there is a HUGE conflict of interest when a member of the ARB has a financial interest in an application. There is, of course, a personal relationship between Quina and the chairman of the board, Ben Townes. As I said earlier, this is the "You-Scratch-My-Back-and-I-Will-Scratch-Your-Back Board."

5. None of these board members should be serving 10-year terms. The incest is indescribable. Carter Quina (and others!) have used their position on the ARB to better themselves financially. ("If you want to get around the ARB regulations, just hire good-ole-Carter! He can get anything passed by the ARB.")

6. No one in our city government is watching (or even cares) what happens behind closed doors at ARB meetings. Our city council has been asleep at the wheel for years!

7. Yes, where was Elizabeth Schrey, the anti-demolition gal? I guess she was going along to get along!

8. The failure of our city government in this case (and many others) runs from top to bottom. The ARB is supposed to protect historical buildings, but didn't. The building department isn't supposed to issue demolition permits without a permit to rebuild, but they did anyway. The city council is supposed to appoint competent people to the ARB, but they appoint political hacks instead.

Anonymous said...

Any new owner is bound by the last plans approved by the ARB.

I don't honestly recall the facts regarding ownership at the time this was heard. Often potential buyers will pursue ARB approvals prior to closing deals.

Inspections is ultimately responsible for ensuring the ARB approved plans are followed. A new owner would have to complete the approved plans. (I would note that at any time one can ask for a new plan to be approved by the ARB. What to watch now is if Code Enforcement acts and if a new plan is now approved or if the rebuild requirement is upheld.).

Elizabeth Schrey

Anonymous said...

Staff was not allowed to support or oppose any projects.

Elizabeth Schrey

Anonymous said...

Inspections will get involved only if there is new construction to inspect! If no one pulls a building permit and the property remains a vacant lot the Building Department will not be involved. Carter Quina is well aware of this fact and Elizabeth Schrey should also know it. Apparently there is no means to hold anyone responsible for outlandish promises made at ARB meetings. Quina knows how to play the system.