In August of 2017, our management company, ICON Real Estate Serives entered into a contract with Security Gate and Access, LLC to install an in/out electornic gate at Hillview Apts. SGA installed some underground conduit then installed several cement bollards to protect an access panel they intened to install for the in/out gate. As soon as they installed the bollards, the local fire department red tagged the project on November 16, 2017 with the threat of monetary fines if the bollards were not removed immediately. I, as the owner of the apartment complex, became involved at the red tag notice. I called SGA and advised them to remove the bollards immediately as they had created a life safey issue. No large fire truck could access Hillview with the bollards in place. It was at that time I discovered that SGA had not contacted the Fire Department or obtained a permit to erect what they were planning, a very obvious and huge error on their part. They did obtain an electrical permit but did not think to contact the local fire department to understand their rules and requirements. This was a major mistake on their part and they attempted to blame my management company or alledge that one of the workers had verbally told them that the fire department was OK with what they were doing. That is not true. What contractor would proceed without contactingn the fire department regarding any issues they may have, just intelligent to do so when erecting potentially hazardous bollards. There were several exchanges of emails where King County Fire was very clear that they would only permit an exit only gate, not an in/out gate. That would then require another gate on the other entrance which already had a new manual gate installed. So, SGA proposed two gates for an aggreagate cost of over $75,000. Because we had just spent $20,000 on a new manual gate for which we did pull a valid permit and met with the Fire Department far in advance to be sure we were in compliance, we had no interest in another automatic gate on that entrace. Apparently, King County told SGA that they wanted an automatic entrance gate on the manual entrance and and exit only gate on the back side where the SGA contract specified an in/out gate. After a flurry of emails from SGA and King County stating that they would only allow a dedicated entrance gate and exit gate, on January 5. 2018, I wrote to King County Fire and SGA that all work needed to cease until we fully understood what we could get approved. Apparently, without our knowledge and against what is specifically written in the SGA contract that they do not procure local building permits or procure them, SGA worked with King County behind our backs, without informing us and used the still open manual gate permit to get a permit to install a vastly different gate system that what was agreed to in our contract. Their actions were also specifically against the email I wrote on January 5 to stop all work until we understood the scope of the work KC wanted. At this point, SGA had only installed some underground conduit, about $4,000 in work/materials at most. That manual gate permit was finally closed out on March 10, 2018, roughly a year after origination. So now there is no permit for any new gate. We charged the $15,138 deposit for the 1 electronic gate on our credit card, we disputed that charge and SGA fought us. They have kept the $15,138 and there is only still the underground conduit, nothing more. They refuse to refund our $$$ even with allowance for them to keep the costs for the tiny amount of work they did. In an email written by Diane Maggitti dated April 2, 2018, she states that she has valid change orders for the vastly changed contract. There are no change orders for any of the new changes that SGA has done, we have asked for them. She also states in that same email that ” we are anxious to finish the job because their contract has grown with their SIGNED change orders”. I assume the contract has grown to include two electronic gates as the last communication we had with them was that King County Fire would lonly allow two gates, thus enriching their contract. In an email sent by Terry Albright on a date not provided, he states “We were able to continue ussing the exisitng Permit and move the Access Controls to a better position.” We never approved any change of position or contract, Terry states that it is better however SGA never provided any drawings or information that was different from the original. What if we did not think it was better?? What if our residents would have to get out of their cars and walk to some remote location?? The exiting permit he refers to is the manual permit, not a new permit that we would have to be aware of and pay for. The bottom line is that SGA worked without our knowledge or permission and under a yet closed out separate manual gate permit to get what they wanted from King County Fire. Both King County Fire and SGA never informed us of this process and literally worked against our specific instrucitons. If the manual gate permit had been closed out by our management company immediately after that gate was completed, SGA could never have obtained a new permit without our knowledge. We have no idea to this day what SGA worked out with King County Fire and we have had to sue SGA for their actions and to get our deposit back. I have never heard of such a manipulative and underhanded way to do business, never knew an open permit for a completely different application could be manipulated to increase a contract to far more in cost. And the statements of a “grown” contract only indicates that another gate is in the picture, not something we want at all and SGA knows it. This has been a nightmare and showed the darker side of a contractor working specifically against instructions and using a permit that at all designed for their contract.
- Name: Security Gate and Access, LLC.
- Country: United States
- State: Washington
- City: Puyallup
- Address: 5402 184th St E Suite C
- Phone: 1 800-676-9362
- Website: sgawa.com