Many Spring Valley residents welcome codes enforcement crackdown

Many Spring Valley residents welcome codes enforcement crackdown

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SPRING VALLEY, N.Y. — The Village of Spring Valley is proving to be a target-rich environment for Rockland County‘s new codes enforcement team.

CBS2’s Tony Aiello was with inspectors Friday afternoon as they visited a restaurant and found building violations on the menu.

It should have been an empty lot between two buildings. Instead it’s been converted into outdoor space for a Caribbean restaurant.

“It’s all illegally constructed,” Rockland codes director Ed Markunas said.

There are unpermitted and uninspected accessory structures. Exposed wiring, outlets not rated for outdoor use. A bathroom that is not up to code.

Another day, another set of violations uncovered by Rockland’s new codes enforcement team.

“I am kind of happy that we are cracking down on all these illegal constructions,” Rockland resident Rosie Samudio said.

Many in Spring Valley say it’s about time. The troubled village administration had to cede inspection power to the county after multiple controversies.

Congressman Mondaire Jones grew up in Spring Valley and supports enforcement, like that which uncovered fire code violations and illegal conversions at the Country Village Towers apartment complex.

“It’s something that probably has taken too long to accomplish so really grateful to see any efforts that would succeed,” he said.

“Codes compliances is there for a reason. Yes, it may be cheaper to ignore the codes, but that’s at the risk of life,” Rockland County Executive Ed Day said.

Inspectors say there is a culture in the village that codes compliance is optional, an afterthought.

“To the local landlords who see your enforcement, they know they’re out of compliance, what should they do?” Aiello asked.

“Speak to us and try to seek compliance, get the proper building permits, have the proper inspections, and we can guide you and help you,” Markunas said.

The team estimates it will take years to fully identify issues in Spring Valley and get them fixed.

Inspectors believe some of the codes violations uncovered Friday date back more than five years.

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