A Hummel Report Investigation
Our quarterly update is a commitment to you - to provide new information and developments on some of our previous Hummel Report investigations. This update includes: the ongoing saga of a Woonsocket woman trying to get her neighbor’s junked cars cleaned up - and news of long-awaited improvements to the exterior of the Providence Amtrak station. And Jim Hummel has learned that the ugly Jersey barriers lining the signature IWay bridge could be gone by the end of the year.
Our quarterly update is a commitment to you - to provide new information and developments on previous investigations. We begin this week with the ongoing saga of a Woonsocket woman - who for decades has looked out her front door at dozens of junked cars.
Last fall we told you about Lorraine LeClerc’s decades-long struggle to get dozen of junked cars cleared from her neighbor - Al Gaffney’s - property, in some cases just feet from yard.
The case has gone from City Hall to Superior Court and back, with no end in sight.
LeClerc: ``And now we’re at a standstill again.’’
While Gaffney has cleared some of the cars, 21 remain by the city’s count. We took this video in February and LeClerc has continued to take pictures over the past several months. The remaining vehicles are registered and insured, which satisfies the state, but if they are inoperable that would violate a city ordinance. City Solicitor Mike Marcello is preparing to bring a case against Gaffney, but said he needs several months to see if the term `inoperable’ applies to Gaffney’s cars.
LeClerc has heard enough.
LeClerc: `` And they have to be operable. They’re not operable. They’ve been sitting there for years. They have to be street worthy. They can’t have flat tires. They can’t have half a vehicle. They have to start.’’
A zoning hearing is scheduled for July.
In 2011 we questioned why millions of taxpayers’ dollars were used to build what some called a `Bridge to Nowhere’ within the Quonset Business Park. Now a study says that bridge has, in fact, helped with the development to Quonset.
The bridge, which cost $4.2 million and was funded mostly by the federal government, connects one side of the park to another. But some business owners at the time told us drivers could access other roads to accomplish the same goal, so why build the bridge?