Demolitions in Penn Hills halted due to partial government shutdown
Five Penn Hills houses slated for demolition will stand a little longer thanks to the partial federal government shutdown that started Dec. 22.
Planner Damian Buccilli said the municipality’s contractor, Jadell Minniefield Construction Services, is unable to secure nearly $38,000 in bonds from the Small Business Administration, a federal agency.
The municipality depends on federal funding from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development to demolish homes. Buccilli said demolition contractors doing work in Penn Hills secure bonds to cover the municipality if mistakes are made on the demolitions.
“And we can’t re-bid or re-award the project,” Buccilli said, adding the stalemate is frustrating. “This is, to my recollection, the first time a (partial federal government) shutdown affected demolitions.”
Penn Hills’ Planning Department issued a public notice Monday indicating five demolitions — 110 Bessemer, 206 Curtis and 1891 Runnette streets; 12409 Frankstown Road and 10019 Grandview Ave. — are delayed indefinitely.
A call to the SBA Pittsburgh District office went unanswered. A recording said the agency is shut down until further notice.
Until normal governmental operations resume, the five demolitions are in limbo, Buccilli said.
Council approved 11 demolitions in September totaling $75,000 . One house, 1855 Lincoln Road, was demolished in November by the owner at his expense, Buccilli said. The remaining five houses will be demolished in the coming weeks by Lutterman Excavating for $37,400 despite the partial government shutdown, Buccilli said .
Dillon Carr is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Dillon at 412-871-2325, email@example.com or via Twitter @dillonswriting.