Friday, July 23, 2010

UPDATE: Emanuel Lutheran Church

The vinyl siding project at Emanuel Lutheran Church started yesterday, and at the end of the day, nearly half of the south side of the church had been covered in vinyl.

Meanwhile, Alderman Chris Wagoner (Third Ward) obtained from the city clerk a copy of the church's application for a certificate of appropriateness. The date on the application is telling: October 9, 2009, the same day that members of the church board came before the Historic Preservation Commission with photographic evidence of failing paint and a proposal to put vinyl siding on the church. What is clear now is that the application form was filled out after the board members appeared before the HPC, and none of the supporting materials required for an application was ever provided. The application was never complete, and it was never accepted by the Historic Preservation Commission. Peter Wurster's "legal opinion" that the sixty days had passed and he could issue a building permit without a certificate of appropriateness would appear to be groundless. The sixty-day clock never started.


  1. The only way to get Hudson city officials to follow the law if the law does not fulfill their own personal agendas is to get a court order.

  2. Thanks for reporting. Can the HPC get a court order now, now that the work has started?

  3. Unfortunately, Jennifer, the Historic Preservation Commission doesn't seem to have the will to do much of anything at this point.

  4. The church did present a filled in c of a application on Oct. 9th, 2009. However, we did not record in our minutes that fact, and now that we have legal counsel, we would have deemed it incomplete. But since at that time we did not know to do that, we did not, so it can be argued both ways, that we accepted the application since nothing is stated that we did not, or that we did not accept it as complete since there was nothing but the form and photos of peeling paint, no samples of the proposed siding or representations of what would look like when done. But in the absence of a written record of this, we don't have a leg to stand on.

  5. Sure you do, Tom. If the HPC asserted itself and convinced the Building Inspector to rescind the permit the burden would fall back on the church to either prove compliance or go to court.

    The time and cost of doing so would not likely be appealing to them -- and then you'd have some leverage to work out a better solution, ideally amicably and out of court...

    --Sam P.

  6. Thank you, Tom, for your explanation.

    By the way, how do you spell C-O-M-P-L-I-C-I-T-Y?