Whitehall condo owner ordered to give up control

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It’s been a long time coming, but Whitehall landlord Tom Olander, majority owner of Woodcliff Condominiums, was issued an emergency order of receivership on Feb. 13 by Environmental Judge Harland Hale.  

The judge chose not to wait until a previously scheduled March hearing date. A representative of Oakwood Management, owned by developer Robert Weiler, will manage the day-to-day operations, while organizing a new condo association, and assessing each unit.

During the Feb. 19 City Council meeting, City Attorney Mike Shannon noted that this ruling does not mean that other owners will automatically go into bankruptcy.  

He’s had several calls of concern about this, and stated that was a thought planted by Olander, who owns over 200 of the 300 units, and most of those are unoccupied and uninhabitable.  The remaining units are owned by other individuals.

A new 55-and-over community is planned for the near future.  Pio Development Ltd., with general partner, Columbus Metropolitan Housing Authority, is planning to develop a six-acre tract at 4445 E. Broad Street next to Holy Spirit Church.  

Most know the property as the Christmas tree lot with the huge snowman.  They will utilize multi-family funding programs of the Ohio Housing Finance Agency.  

The three-story facility will have 49 units in 49,000 square feet of space.  The apartments will be situated on the back portion of the land, with retail in the front facing Broad Street.

Development Director Dan Lorek said that this does not mean low-income housing will be built.  With the federal tax credit, it will be housing for those over the age of 55, and seniors in an eligible income range.  

The development will be comparable to the National Church Residences on Country Club Road.  Pio will contract with National Church Residences to manage the complex.  

Mike McKinney, of Pio, said there is not yet a specified target date for ground breaking or completion.

In other business, council passed a resolution appointing five electors to serve on the Charter Review Commission.  After an executive session Feb. 12, council members came to an agreement with one change.  

The commission will consist of Heather Eskew,  Amalee Soteriades, Tom Potter, Greg Thurman and Dick Janusz.  The only change was replacing former city attorney Cheryl Nester with Janusz.  

Potter and Thurman are former members of council.  

Councilwoman Leslie LaCorte, who had objected to the earlier selection process, said that she appreciated President Brent Howard’s willingness to listen to council’s input, and agreeing to the revision.

Service Director Ray Ogden announced that after a bid opening Feb. 15, a continuous curb and gutter with approaches project will be done this year on Seigman Avenue.  He will have a public involvement meeting in late April or early May to inform Seigman residents what to expect through the construction.  

Council defeated a resolution authorizing the auditor to convert 46.25 hours of sick leave to injury leave for police department employee, Theresa Emerson, who claimed a work related injury on December 6, 2006.

The next council meeting will be March 4 at 7 p.m.

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