Democratic Governance On Display: Oakland Warehouse Not Inspected For Three Decades

It’s harsh, right? But who were people blaming for Flint’s water issue? Republican Governor Rick Snyder despite the state having no jurisdiction over Flint’s water supply. In this case, the city of Oakland had ultimate responsibility for the buildings and structures within city limits and 36 people are dead in part due to the city’s negligence, and that goes right to the feet of the people running that town for the last 50 years.

Oakland’s Ghost Ship warehouse where 36 people died in a fire last week had not been inspected in 30 years, according to officials in the California city.

“It is not acceptable,” Oakland City Councilman Noel Gallo told CNN on Thursday, blaming widespread budget cuts and a lack of communication between the City Council and city administration in part for the apparent failure.

Gallo was reacting to Wednesday’s disclosure that the city’s Planning and Building Department hadn’t inspected the warehouse for three decades.

Right. Budget cuts are to explain why a building hadn’t been inspected in thirty years. Here is more nonsense:

There weren’t any inspections because “we had no applications for permits in the last 30 years, and there were no violations that were submitted for interior work within the main building attributed to that street address,” said Darin Ranelletti, the city’s interim director of planning and building.

Right. Meanwhile, people were apparently complaining about the building continuously:

On Friday night, the warehouse became the scene of one of Oakland’s deadliest building fires as an electronic dance party was underway. The cause of the blaze remains under investigation.

Nevertheless, the city received repeated complaints over the years about the warehouse-turned-art space, a dilapidated two-story structure at 1315 31st Ave., and its adjacent lot.

The site had become cluttered with old cars, oil containers, pests and trash, according to those complaints.

Many of the complaints were directed at the lot, pointing to a “ton of garbage piling up on the property” as well as the “illegal interior building structure” at the warehouse, according to city records released this week.

The most recent complaints were filed three weeks before Friday’s fire.

The notion that the city couldn’t send somebody over there to check property because of budget cuts is complete garbage.

“I am disappointed that we weren’t more assertive and aggressive to deal with that property,” said Gallo, the councilman whose district includes the Ghost Ship.

Yeah, I bet you are. 

Family members should be contacting lawyers and prepared to sue the city. This is unacceptable.