Keep your promises made by the CITY of GLENDALE INSPECTORS
This petition made change with 33 supporters!
GAUCHOS VILLAGE SURVIVED THE RESSESSION, BUT NOT GLENDALE INSPECTION!
September 16, 2014
Dear Long Time Customers, Friends and Family,
If you have been wondering where GAUCHOS Village is today and why we haven't opened our doors at the new location of 135 N Maryland Ave by now, please take few minutes of your time and read my story, as I am in great need of your help in hopes of being able to open our doors at our new location to serve you again.
My name is Kevin Aksacki, President/Owner of Gauchos Village, a Brazilian Steakhouse located in Glendale, CA. I have owned and operated the Gauchos Village restaurant in Glendale for 15 years, while having relocated three times due to large construction projects, finally settling at 135 N Maryland Ave, a previous home to La Cubana restaurant.
PROMISES MADE BY CITY of GLENDALE, prior to the move, have not been kept and GAUCHOS Village is left alone, to suffer the consequences. Having been assured by the City's redevelopment agency officials that the transition to this new location would go smoothly and believing that since the site had already housed a restaurant, there would be few if any regulatory requirements, my staff and I moved to the new location and were ready to open for business on August 6, 2014. PROMISES ARE NOT BEING KEPT BY THE CITY of GLENDALE INSPECTORS Sadly, it was not to be and I am frankly at a loss as to why we are still receiving conflicting compliance instructions from city staff and are still unable to open. Each week, since we notified the city that we were ready for inspection and approval, city inspectors have come to the location and issued a list of required changes. Many were very expensive, such as an entire sprinkler system, for example, which cost $110,000. After its installation, the inspector informed us that we would not pass final inspection because we failed to treat areas of reclaimed woodwork. In fact, there is drywall behind the decorative woodwork as well as steel beams, which do not burn. Still not enough.
Each time my team and I would complete the list of required corrections, and would request a final inspection, only to be handed a new list of requirements. In one instance, my contractor asked the city inspector why he had failed to mention a correction on his previous visit. He said, "Sorry. I have too much in my Rolodex." Another time, we were told we had to fix the fire alarm horns, which we discovered subsequently have been inoperable since 2002 because the system is incompatible with the remainder of the building. During another inspection, we were told that we needed more strobe lights, too. To date, we still don't have enough lights to pass final inspection. WE ARE HURTING DUE TO THE CITY INSPECTION DELAYS More than 90% of U.S. employers are small businesses. I am one of them and I can assure you that to be subjected to this regulatory excess is a financial and emotional hardship that is completely unwarranted.
During this lengthy and painful inspection process, I continued to pay a staff of 42 employees until I frankly ran out of money. Now I have no restaurant and no experienced staff to rely on when I re-open Gauchos Village. As of October 1, I will be forced to default on my mortgage because I have been unable to generate revenue from my restaurant and have been forced to invest more than $300,000 in compliance efforts. I acted in good faith when I committed to staying in Glendale, although I had an opportunity to move to downtown L.A., where city official were eager to have me.
I am at a loss where to turn so I have decided to tell my story to anyone who will listen, including the news media, social media, friends, and business associates. I just want to re-open my restaurant, hire my staff back, and conduct my business in Glendale. Someone. Anyone. Please, please help.
For we can not continue to allow this abuse of power to destroy lives as It almost destroyed mine! I am here blowing the wistle of injustice against the Small Business such Owners such as me. It is time to put an end to Inspectors who's Inspections and Corrections never comes to an end. You finish the first one, over a month later we continue getting a new one every week.
In the meantime I went from been the Owner of Gauchos Village Steak House to become a homeless for my situation got to a point that I am not capable of paying my Mortgage next month! All because someone wanted to abuse their power and I have never felt so hopeless, powerless in my entire life which have been a LIVING HELL since December when I was informed that I would have to move again and two of your inspectors really play the Musical Chair with us and I am now at the bottom of well.
It is funny to accept the fact that after 15 and half years later, creating jobs, paying taxes, bringing more costumers and consequently more business to everyone in Glendade, due to the name Gauchos Village, that the City would have some respect for us and our business and all that we stand for and would have made our transition smoother. Instead, my team and I have experinced HELL. Run out of all my reserves, credits, money, credit cards, and my Health for I had to see a doctor due to the stress level that I had to endure!
Instead of helping and making it easier, our City of Glendale has charged double for every time I need a plan check that regularly would cost $2,500.00. The City sells us the idea to pay DOUBLE to expedite the process, which we paid, dreaming that the story was true, just to find out that it is all the hands of the INSPECTORS who play gods and keep everyone really scared of them. No supervision, and it is common knowledge among people that the ones who complain will forever regret for retaliations will be coming their ways.
I decided to do just that. Tell everyone my story. I have been barried alive and only when I realized that humiliating myself for the Inspectors "Mechanical and Fire" report, who have asked us for the impossible, crying for them my situation, has been completely ignored, I decided to go look for help. So I look up an Old Friend - Jeff Alpert - Great Officer, good heart that even has a hard time accepting that his coworker is evil. So I cried to him as well and told him how scared I was of loosing my home due to his friends games being played against Gauchos Village!
Then, I cried my eyes out to the Glendale Redevelopment people and there I found a person with a great heart named Ellen, who has really gone above and beyond trying to help. I also would like to thank you, Officer Gabriel Raza, for you also have shown great sympathy for my misfortune with the situation of my relocation. Yes, I cried to everywhere, just to realize that I should start screaming and maybe I could make a difference, when talking and crying was not to get us out of this situation. And I have. YOU CAN HELP GAUCHOS VILLAGE! Who is gonna be responsible for all my losses? I don't know. But I do believe that I, and my wonderful team at Gauchos Village, whom I am desperately trying to keep employed just so that I don't loose these precious employees, that we have our biggest support group that we must turn to - and that is you, my dear customers.
I do believe that, if your voice is heard, via email or a simple phone call made to the City personnel responsible for the 'Inspection MASE' they have created with 'pay to expedite' signs posted on every corner you turn to, that with your help and voice we can make a difference, and that you can help us to reopen GAUCHOS Village to serve you for another 10+ years right here in our beautify city of Glendale.
I and my team have done EVERYTHING within our power, and we have spent ALL OUR FUNDS available to have successfully transitioned to our new location and yet, there is a new mountain put right in front of us to climb, with possibly more to come IF we were able to climb the one set in front of us. And to QUALITY for climbing these impossible mountains, we first must PAY EXTRA to expedite each and every step... and you would think that this would eventually come to a stop. WHAT STEPS YOU CAN TAKE TO HELP We urge you, please, that you make a phone call to any of your friends and family and lend a helping hand to pull us out of this INSPECTION MASE, as this clearly is not setup for our success but it is setup to drain all our finances and leave us with a final "if you pay now, and if you pay extra, we can expedite your inspection..." for the 4th, 5th, 6th time, on and on...
Please, spare a minute of your precious time and contact any of the following city individuals by phone, or by email, and demand that they do justice and that they give us a fair treatment and allow us to serve you, our beloved GAUCHOS customers.
On behalf of my staff and I, I humbly thank you for your time on reading my story and I pray that you will do what can, to lend a helping hand and to make your voice heard at the City of Glendale about the injustice that we have been facing for over a month.
I have also provided you with a list of our City of Glendale Council Members and Executives below, and urge you to demand justice and fair treatment towards small businesses of City of Glendale.
Kevin Aksacki Owner / President Gauchos Village 135 N. Maryland Ave Glendale, CA 91206
Tel. 323-997-0620 Email: email@example.com
WHO YOU SHOULD CONTACT DEMANDING ANSWERS
Mr. Mayor Zareh Sinanyan
Laura Friedman - Council Member
Ara Najarian - Council Member
Frank Quintero - Council Member
Dave Weaver - Council Member
Michael J. Garcia - City Attorney
Scott Ochoa - City Manager
Ardashes "Ardy" Kassakhian - City Clerk
Rafi Manoukian - City Treasurer
Executives & Key Staff
Yasmin Beers - Assistant City Manager, Management Services
John Takhtalian - Deputy City Manager, Management Services
Brian Ganley - Chief Information Officer, Information Services
Bob Elliot - Director, Finance
Matt Doyle - Director, Human Resources
Harold Scoggins - Fire Chief
Jess Duran - Director, Community Services & Parks
Hassan Haghani - Director, Community Development
Roubik Golanian - Director, Public Works
Stephen M. Zurn - General Manager, Glendale Water & Power
Cindy Cleary - Director, Library, Arts & Culture
Robert Castro - Police Chief
Philip Lanzafame - Director of Economic Development
Michele Flynn - City Auditor
Kevin Aksacki Owner / President Gauchos Village 135 N. Maryland Ave Glendale, CA 91206 Tel. 323-997-0620 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
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