A builder is making a $1,000 donation to the Ridgefield Historical Society instead of paying the maximum $500 fine for tearing down two buildings without the proper permits. CV Building Concepts owner Rich Szentkuti owns 8 and 10 New Street, where a house and a garage stood. The house was built in the 1870s in the Queen Anne style.
The Ridgefield Press reports that a demolition permit was submitted for review by the Building Department, but the structures were demolished before the end of the town’s 30-day demolition ordinance.
The 2020 ordinance requires any person, corporation or other entity to first obtaining a permit from the town’s building department. While notification was made to the Ridgefield Historical Society, it wasn't sent by certified mail. The Historical Sociery sent a letter to Szentkuti a few days after submitting the permit for review that the house had historical value. The letter triggered a provision in the ordinance that should have delayed the issuance of the permit for a period of 90 days.
During the most recent Board of Selectmen's meeting, First Selectman Rudy Marconi explained that the waiting period allows concerned parties to work with applicants on finding ways to maintain historic characteristics in their site plans to ensure potentially historic homes are preserved.