Resident hits out at undone repair work
Orelia State housing tenant Mark Kowitz has accused the Department of Housing of failing to keep its promises and said he had waited 18 months for his cracked ceiling and hazardous kitchen to be fixed.
Picture: Department of Housing tenant Mark Kowitz points to his cracked ceiling.
‘‘A year and a half ago they sent out people and they said, ‘We will send out a carpenter’, and they still haven’t,’’ he said.
Mr Kowitz said the department promised him a new kitchen and for the past year he has had to deal with sharp, cracked tiles.
‘‘Every time I go to wash up I cut my fingers,’’ he said.
Mr Kowitz was hopeful his leaky roof would be fixed before winter.
‘‘When it rains it doesn’t drip in, it pours in. I have to keep a bucket there,’’ he said.
Kwinana MLA Roger Cook said he attempted to arrange a meeting with the manager at the department’s Kwinana branch.
‘‘In the past when Homeswest managed maintenance internally, if there was a problem highlighted they would ring up a local contractor and he or she would come because they were in the area.
‘‘Now when maintenance calls come through they go to Transfield (a private contractor),’’ he said.
Mr Cook believes the maintenance system has been a ‘‘basket case’’ since privatisation.
‘‘We have a situation where contractors are being paid for work not done and we have a backlog of maintenance, ’’ he said.
‘‘In a rich state, it is unacceptable that tenants should be forced to wait for months for important repairs."
Department of Housing general manager of service delivery Steve Parry said Mr Kowitz’s issue was only brought to the department’s attention on March 13 and a job order for the ceiling repair had been issued immediately.
Mr Parry said repairs were currently being undertaken and previous work on the roof of the apartment was undertaken last year.
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