By Matt Clevenger
TROY- Lawyers representing the owner of the Tavern Building on West Main Street have issued a new statement regarding recent legal developments involving the tornado-damaged building.
“We have been served with a number of opinions, legal orders and advisements none of which have taken up the most pressing and responsible issue of public safety,” said a statement released by the building owner’s attorney, Dereck Muncy, on Monday, April 10. “Public safety, however, is the central and most important issue to us, as it should be for everyone.”
“The building is not safe and represents a public hazard,” the statement said. “The fact that most of the government authorities or community organizations have ignored this point is a remarkable oversight on their part. Right now, we are exploring our legal options and we will be addressing the public safety issue in the very near future.”
The Tavern Building was damaged by tornadoes in 2020, and later approved for demolition by members of the Troy Planning Commission and Board of Zoning Appeals. An appeal of that decision filed by the Troy Historic Preservation Alliance and neighboring property owners blocked the planned demolition, and was affirmed by the Ohio Second District Court of appeals in a decision issued on Friday, March 24.
The city of Troy delivered orders to repair the Tavern Building in July of 2021, and again on Nov. 3, 2022. The building’s owner, Randy Kimmel, was granted an extension for the repair orders until March 9. Some of the ordered repairs to the building were completed in December of 2022.
The deadline for completing the repairs ordered by the city was March 10, and on March 15 the city of Troy filed misdemeanor charges against Kimmel for “maintaining structures in a state of disrepair.”
Miami County Chief Building Official Rob England issued an adjudication order on March 27, declaring the Tavern Building an unsafe building/serious hazard and requiring abatement of the hazardous conditions within 14 days.
Workers from Bruns Contracting began demolition of part of the Tavern Building on Wednesday, March 29. Demolition work was halted later that morning by an injunction order issued by Miami County Common Pleas Court Judge Stacy M. Wall.