Crumbling basement homeowners seek federal investigation - WFSB 3 Connecticut

Crumbling basement homeowners seek federal investigation

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Crumbling basement homeowners are seeking a federal investigation. (WFSB file photo) Crumbling basement homeowners are seeking a federal investigation. (WFSB file photo)
HARTFORD, CT (WFSB) -

They've hit several brick walls, but homeowners with crumbling foundations are not giving up.

"In my case they want a quarter of a million dollars it. I can't afford that, I'm retired," Bill Dupont, of Stafford, said.

DuPont told Eyewitness News that his basement is cracked inside and out.

"I can't sell it. I can't do anything," DuPont said.

With nowhere to turn, they're asking for a federal investigation.

"We need some accountability. We can't just let this continue. Not just on the state level national level," Tim Heim, of the CT Coalition of Crumbling Basements, said.

For most, it has been a no-win situation. The state has offered low interest loans for repairs, but it's money many say they don't have.

Insurance companies won't cover repairs for the damage, and FEMA, the federal agency that helps with natural disasters has turned its back.

"Based on the number of homes, 550 and counting. I believe and I asked the FEMA director last Friday, face to face to review the again," Governor Dannel Malloy said.

Homeowners in 36 towns, mostly in Eastern Connecticut, share a common denominator. All of the homes were contracted by Joseph J. Mottes Company and Becker Construction, which used pyrrhotite in the construction of the basements. 

When the State Attorney General reviewed the complaints, the decision were overturned because it was decided there were not, are still not any, standards on the "content of mineral that is causing these foundations to crumble."

In 1993, Linda Tofolwsky was one of the first homeowners to come forward with the complaint, after having put nearly $63,000 of repairs into her home. When Eyewitness News asked Tofolwsky whether she feels the state let her down, she replied, "big time -- over and over -- they've shut the door and locked it."

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