Atwater trustees will advertise for bids to clean up the Flamingo Motel debris

The remains of the Flamingo Motel at 6893 Waterloo Road in Atwater. Natalie Wolford/The Portager

Opting to err on the side of transparency, Atwater trustees will advertise for contractors to bid on the cleanup of two potentially hazardous debris piles on Waterloo Road in Atwater and Eberly Road in Randolph.

Trustee John Kovacich said Tuesday that the trustees were not obligated to advertise for bids, but will do so in the Record-Courier on Aug. 26 and Sept. 2. The trustees will open the sealed bids during their Sept. 13 meeting.

Contractors will be put on notice that they must be properly qualified to handle asbestos and accept that EPA officials will oversee work at both sites.

The debris piles were created July 8, when Fox Contracting owner Jeremiah Johnson attempted to fulfill his contract with the trustees to demolish the old Flamingo Motel at 6893 Waterloo Road in Atwater Township. He transported the debris to his property at 5185 Eberly Road in Randolph Township, intending to take it from there to a landfill in Minerva when he had time.

An unidentified person saw Johnshon offloading the debris in Randolph and alerted Randolph Trustee John Lampe, who called the EPA. It turned out that Johnson had never pulled a permit to demolish the Flamingo Motel, and no inspections had been done to determine if the structure contained asbestos.

Johnson is now facing a $675 fine from the county building department, triple the cost of the permit he should have pulled. The trustees are hoping cleaning up the two messes will cost less than the informal $92,800 quote they already received.

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Wendy DiAlesandro is a former Record Publishing Co. reporter and contributing writer for The Portager.