Westview landlord going to court

Friday, March 29, 2019

Westview Trailer Court owner Roy Worbetts has disputed the City of Alta’s claims of junk and disorderly conditions on his property, filing for a non-jury trial in Buena Vista County to dispute a pair of citations, scheduled Apr. 24.

Worbetss’s Cherokee attorney, John Loughlin, will appear on the Canadian landlord’s behalf.

The February citations for disorderly conditions and junked vehicles and machinery on the property, which total $370, were the only the first round.

City council approved a second round of fines in March after failure to comply from the first citations on his 50-lot property, with promise to delivery more swiftly if conditions don’t improve.

The city instructed code enforcement officer Matt Hess to give a 15-day grace period earlier this month before issuing more. Infractions can be fined a maximum of $750 plus court surcharges, compounding daily.

Loughlin previously sent correspondance to the city informing them that the citation notices were served improperly, something the city and code enforcement dispute after sending them via certified mail to his British Columbia address.

Code enforcer Matt Hess told city council earlier in March that issues with trash removal were defended by management due to the amount of snow on the ground. Mayor Al Clark says it’s their fault for waiting this much time to deal with it after extensive warnings.

“I have no animosities of throwing the book at them,” Clark said. “This is something that has been coming at them for a year.”

“Michelle Castro does not dodge my calls,” Hess credited for cooperation. “She shows interest in what we want to see removed.” They take regular walks to review violations around the property.

The mayor has been one of the most vocal about persistently hounding the landlord with fines until they comply, disagreeing at times with the less abrasive style the code enforcement officer tried to coax cooperation for a better environment for the Alta residents.

Clark previously said Worbetts finally made contact with the city because of the expiring warnings. “If you cut him any slack, he’s going to ignore you again,” he said to Hess. “Keep on top of him.”

It’s been a long battle for tenants of the property, who reached an agreement with the city last year, brokered by the TeamCAN union and community leaders.

The city has made it clear that they are no longer subject to the tension between Westview and the City of Alta, given their cooperation.