Contractors blame Albany city leaders for slow storm recovery - WALB.com, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

Contractors blame Albany city leaders for slow storm recovery

Contractors are demanding answers for the slow storm recovery. (Source: WALB) Contractors are demanding answers for the slow storm recovery. (Source: WALB)
Tony Martin of Nitram Construction (Source: WALB) Tony Martin of Nitram Construction (Source: WALB)
Albany Engineering and Planning Managing Director Bruce Maples (Source: WALB) Albany Engineering and Planning Managing Director Bruce Maples (Source: WALB)
(Source: WALB) (Source: WALB)
ALBANY, GA (WALB) -

Contractors are demanding answers for the slow storm recovery. 

Dozens of contractors in Albany have complained there aren't enough city inspectors to approve their projects. 

And because of it, many of their clients have to wait to move back in their homes. 

Tony Martin of Nitram Construction said getting an inspector on Friday afternoon was simply luck.

"It doesn't happen every time sometimes we get lucky because we start early," said Martin. 

But in the past, booking an inspector to look at his clients' storm-damaged properties has been a hassle. 

"We only got one building inspector and to do a job like this requires a minimum of two inspections," explained Martin. 

Due to the shortage, many of his projects are on hold.

"They want to know why we're not working on their place," said Martin. 

His response is they're waiting on inspections.

"When we had the flood work here, we had help," said Martin. 

"We're going to resolve that issue just like we did in 94 and 98," explained Engineering and Planning Managing Director Bruce Maples.

"All the permits that were issued in 20-16 were 4,053," said Maples, which is more building permits than all of 2016.

"We do understand his concern and his complaint," said Maples.

Maples said the department is down two inspectors, which means there's only one inspector. 

"We're trying to find some additional inspection to come in and take care of this problem," explained Maples. 

But with more than 1800 homes damaged after January storms and the April storms, Maples said it will take some time. 

"We hope they'll be some patience and we'll get there," said Maples. 

"I'm absolutely on the inspector side, there's just not enough inspectors to do the job right now," said Martin.

Maples encourages contractors to call early in the morning to get on the inspector's list.

Inspectors are usually in the office between 8 to 10 in the morning and 1 to 2 in the afternoon.

Maples explained much of the hold up is also due to some contractors' projects not being ready when inspectors come out. 

He also said that when inspectors can't make to all of the projects on the list, they will get to them by the next day. 

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