Saturday, September 12, 2009

Kevin McCrea exposes Irregularities at Temple Place


Since the first televised debate our office has been flooded with calls and emails about all the waste, fraud and abuse taking place in the City of Boston. People are clearly fed up with it, and they understand that only candidate Kevin McCrea will stand up to the insiders.

One of the calls we received was about building irregularities on Temple Place. The caller told us that Suffolk University was trying to build dormitory buildings by allegedly entering into an agreement to have a developer turn buildings on Temple Place into apartments where Suffolk University could house their students.

We investigated and there were a number of irregularities. In May 2009, a permit was obtained for 29-35 Temple Place to turn the building on floors 2 through 6 from offices to a boarding house. The permit was for only $100,000 worth of work even though they were renovating 5 floors into living units.

Just as odd, just two weeks ago on August 27, 2009, a letter was sent to the building department from well known law firm McDermott, Quilty & Miller indicating that the developer had the “intention to renovate and change the legal use and occupancy of the Premises to include a Lodging House (not a dormitory)” and that they would seek to get approval for a lodging house at a future hearing before the Licensing Board. The permit has been updated to show 1.3 million dollars in cost. It seems backwards to spend 1.3 million dollars on a renovation before you have approval for the use which is proposed.

While Kevin McCrea was visiting the building on Saturday September 5, 2009 to get a first hand look he also saw work proceeding at 21-27 Temple Place. He talked to a worker who showed him the first floor which was not completed, with wires hanging from walls, and other items not finished. The worker said it was also being renovated for apartments and that people were already moving in. The worker allowed Mr. McCrea to take some pictures.

During the week we did further investigation and discovered that permits had been obtained for $325,000 to combine two buildings into one, install a new commercial elevator, sprinklers, and convert offices into multiple high end apartments. Again, permit cost was vastly undervalued but the permit had been granted.

By August 31, 2009 the building permits were signed off by the building inspectors and contractor Michael McGough subsequently filed for a certificate of occupancy for the building despite the fact that the buildings are obviously not done.

Although a Certificate of Occupancy has not been issued for the building we discovered that people are living in the building, and even took pictures of people moving in. Kevin McCrea talked to some residents that confirmed that they were living in the building. We reported this information to the FBI and to Gary Moccia at the building department. On Friday, September 11, 2009 Mr. Moccia sent an inspector to the building who actually discovered someone taking a shower in the building which was allegedly unoccupied. The inspector issued an order that the people vacate the building.

Why would a licensed contractor allow people to live in a building which does not have a Certificate of Occupancy? On a hunch we decided to check the records of the Office of Campaign and Political Finance. Sure enough, Mr. McGough had made a number of political campaign contributions over the years to local elected officials, including a number to Tom Menino and Michael Flaherty.

Kevin McCrea says “Because this City is not run by the rule of law, but rather by whatever the Mayor says, people believe they can get around the rules. Whether it is building 700-foot towers in areas zoned for 150 feet, to institutional expansion, down to housing people in unsafe buildings, people realize that if you know the right people, if you hire the right lawyers, you can get whatever you want. That will stop when I become Mayor.”

“With the recent tragedies involving loss of human life due to building deficiencies it is amazing to think that a licensed contractor would try and put people into a building that the Fire Department has not signed off on or that does not have a Certificate of Occupancy.”




5/16/2002 McGough, Michael
741 East Fifth St. South Boston, MA 02127
Wallace, Brian P. $75.00 3/15/2002

McGough, Michael
741-743 East Fifth Street South Boston, MA 02127 Carpenter
Self-Employed Walsh, Martin J. $500.00

5/16/2002 McGough, Michael
741 East Fifth St. Boston, MA 02127
Wallace, Brian P. $75.00

12/3/2007 McGough, Michael
Boston, MA 02101 Information Requested
Information Requested Hart Jr., John A. $500.00

3/24/2004 McGough, Michael
741-743 East Fifth Street South Boston, MA 02127 Letter Sent 03/26/04
Cahill, Timothy $500.00

7/26/2005 McGough, Michael
35 Blueberry Lane Westwood, MA 02090 Carpenter
Local 33 Menino, Thomas M. $500.00

7/25/2005 McGough, Michael
741-743 East Fifth Street South Boston, MA 02127 Letter Sent 07/25/05
Cahill, Timothy $500.00

LOCAL 33 Flaherty Jr., Michael F. $500.00

12/23/2006 McGough, Michael
33 Blueberry Lane Westwood, MA 02090 Carpenter
Local 33 Murphy, Stephen $500.00

7/15/2008 McGough, Michael
35 Blueberry Lane Westwood, MA 02090 Contractor
Metropolitan Design Management Menino, Thomas M. $500.00

8/19/2008 McGough, Michael
534 East Broadway, Unit 1 South Boston, MA 02127 Letter Sent 03/26/04
Cahill, Timothy $500.00

Flaherty Jr., Michael F. $125.00

1 comment:

Christopher King said...


No Certificates of Occupancy?

That's slumlord standard in New England.

Remember the Gloucester fire where there were no Certificates of Occupancy and an un-inspected building and Robert Taylor died?

I drafted that lawsuit and we go to Summary Judgment hearing on it in two days, 15 September 2009 2p Room One, Lawrence Superior Court.

Here is the related legislation on Robert Taylor's Law -- calling for notification to prospective tenants if there are un-inspected premises -- I initiated and submitted to Senator Bruce Tarr, who submitted it earlier this year.

Boston would be better off if we had more landlords -- and statesmen -- like you Kevin.


"Gloucester's first eight-alarm fire took down the Lorraine and the neighboring Temple Ahavat Achim and damaged nearby buildings.

Of the plaintiffs, all but Kushin were Lorraine residents when a fire started just before midnight and raced up and through the four-story building of 23 apartments. All tenants except Robert Taylor, 70, were able to flee.

Kushin gave up her apartment in the building just weeks before the fire. She told the Times she was so fearful of a fire she had to move out.

Schluze filed suit Dec. 31. Crnilovic-Phillips based the case on the "warrant of habitability" principle, which allows tenants to assume the apartments they rent are safe and up to code.

The Lorraine, located across School Street from Fire Department headquarters, was high on a Fire Department watch list, was three years overdue for a safety inspection, and did not have an occupancy permit, the Times reported Dec. 21.

Schulze, according to the suit, was never told of the absence of an occupancy certificate or an inspection when she applied for a unit in response to an ad. The suit contends "the defendants were under a legal duty to disaffirm the implied warrant of habitability" but did not do so.

Concealing information about the undone inspections constitutes fraud, breach of contract and negligence, the suit alleges....."