To the Readers' Forum:
In the May 8 edition of The Post-Journal, a letter was published from Michael Dellahoy of Bemus Point entitled ''Contractor Concerns,'' outlining his predicament with a contractor. I too have a concern with regard to a local contractor. I too followed the steps that Mr. Dellahoy outlined only to be told that the situation was a civil matter and not criminal.
The contractor I engaged to put a metal roof on my house took the money that was to be used to purchase materials to install the roof. He did not buy the materials. He did not install the roof and he did not return my money. In Busti Town Court at Small Claims I won the judgment that I claimed against him, but the contractor who admitted he took the money and agreed to pay it back has failed to do so. The court has no power to collect the money. I have contacted the Chautauqua County clerk, district attorney's office, sheriff's office, the New York State attorney general and Better Business Bureau. I hired a lawyer to help with the situation and I contacted a business partner of the contractor hoping that he could help. I contacted the contractor in person, but my emails and telephone calls are not taken or returned. This has been going on since July 2011. I know for a fact that this contractor has also taken money for materials from another person and has failed to complete the project or return the money. That person also won the judgment in Small Claims Court. Perhaps the writer of the May 8 letter has also been duped by the same contractor that I dealt with.
I fail to understand how a businessman dealing with the public and licensed by the county can treat members of the public in such a dishonest way and not be guilty of a crime. Isn't the sheriff supposed to protect the public from scammers? Isn't the district attorney looking out for the welfare of the citizens of Chautauqua County? And what of the standards that the Better Business Bureau and the NYS Attorney General 's Office are supposed to uphold?
This dishonest contractor is being allowed to prey upon others when he is not stopped, punished or publicly discredited by the local authorities.
This contractor stole my money and lied to the Busti Town Court judge. He's still out there preying on others and I have no recourse. I find that deplorable.