CWC seeks refund from VW Parts owner
By Joe Moskowitz
Embattled auto salvage and repair shop owner William Hrazanek has yet another fight on his hands. This one is with the Catskill Watershed Corporation (CWC).
The CWC says it gave Hrazanek owned corporations a total of more than $84,000 in grants and loans. It has now given the Fleischmanns man 30 days, starting last Thursday, to repay the money.
CWC Corporate Counsel Timothy Cox says that in the days following Hurricane Irene, the CWC, under the guidance of the town boards within the Watershed, gave businesses grants of up to $30,000 to pay for flood related repairs. Hrazanek’s VWP, Inc. received two $30,000 grants, one for the VW Parts, Inc. facility on Wagner Avenue, and the other for the former Bailey Manufacturing plant on Depot Street, both in Fleischmanns.
In addition, Hrazanek’s 926 Main Street Corporation received a $12,100 grant and a $12,100 loan. That corporation owns the building at 926 Main in Fleischmanns located next to the theater building. Cox says no work has been done on any of them and the CWC now wants its money back.
Hrazanek says that under the terms of his loans and grants, he has one more year in which to get the work done. But Cox disputes those facts. Noting that nothing has been done in nearly two years, Cox says it’s time to give the money back. The situation gets more complicated because Hrazanek says he is certain the Federal Emergency Management Administration (FEMA) plans to buy the Wagner Avenue and Depot Street structures and tear them down. Cox says the CWC is not going to pay for repairs for buildings that the owner wants torn down.
This is just the latest problem facing Hrazanek. Three weeks ago the state Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) raided his two Fleischmanns auto storage facilities along with his Arkville junkyard. There is still no word from the DEC on what they were looking for.
Claims no knowledge
Booms remain in a drainage ditch next to a property VWP owns in Mount Tremper after the spill of some unidentified liquid. Hrazanek tells the News that someone spilled oil on his property. And, Belleayre Resort backer Kenneth Pasternak has begun foreclosure proceedings on the Depot Street property. When asked if he feels like he is being targeted, Hrazanek told the News, “I don’t care.”
Meanwhile, Hrazanek purchased the former Ingram Body Shop on Route 30 north of Margaretville in the Delaware County tax auction for $35,000. Shortly after the purchase he said he would base a towing service out of that location. Middletown Code Enforcement Officer Pat Davis says Hrazanek would have to get a special use permit from the Middletown Planning Board as it hasn’t been used commercially for more than a year.
Hrazanek says Davis is wrong and he claims that any use, even if it is private, would allow him to use it for auto repair or storage. But he says it doesn’t matter. Hrazanek claims he has already sold the property.