Code enforcement effort has homeowner upset

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – Springfield code enforcement inspectors have been finding housing code violations in the city’s Hill-McKnight neighborhood, but at least one city homeowner is taking issue with her violation notice.

A housing code inspector noticed the peeling paint on Andrea Garde’s 1887 Hill-McKnight home. She has been given 30 days to correct the problem, but she told 22News the paint job would cost her $18,000.

“I live in a neighborhood that’s extremely impoverished. Where does anybody think this money is coming from? Why all of a sudden put the burden on the people who live and try to exist in their neighborhood?” Garde said.

But Springfield’s deputy code enforcement commissioner David Cotter told 22News that Hill-McKnight isn’t being singled out. The inspections have turned up hundreds of violations everywhere.

“We go from house to house and street to street, neighborhood to neighborhood. It’s throughout the city of Springfield. We don’t target any one single neighborhood,” Cotter said. “We try to hit every single street in the city at least once a year.”

Cotter said the city will try to help homeowners find the resources to pay for the necessary improvements. And he said violations are quite commonplace; his inspectors found four hundred violations in an area just of ten streets.

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