Tenant sues manager over shoddy hurricane repairs

Kelly Holleran Apr. 27, 2009, 6:33am

A Port Arthur woman says workers hired by Regency Park Section I Owners Association and its president did not adequately fix her house after it was damaged by Hurricane Rita.

Sheila White filed a lawsuit April 22 in Jefferson County District Court against the association and its president, Orlando Ciramella.

According to the complaint, White's home at Unit 7730 Regency Drive in Port Arthur was under a blanket insurance policy, and the homeowner's association was supposed to collect insurance proceeds and pay for repairs.

After Hurricane Rita, White claims Ciramella collected insurance on her home and hired a contractor to build a new roof for her residence.

However, White noticed her roof was leaking. She complained to Ciramella and asked if he would hire a different contractor to perform the work, but he refused her request, the complaint says.

White claims she also told Ciramella that her home suffered from structural damages after the storm and that those needed to be fixed before any roof work began. But Ciramella refused to take her advice.

White asked Ciramella for an accounting of the funds he received from the insurance company for repairs to her home. However, he has refused to honor her request and will only reveal the expenses spent fixing her home, the suit states.

White claims Ciramella and the association breached their fiduciary duties to her.

She is seeking unspecified actual damages, plus pre- and post-judgment interest, attorney's fees, costs and other relief to which she may be entitled.

H.P. Wright of Wright and Pitre in Port Neches will be representing her.

The case has been assigned to Judge Gary Sanderson, 60th District Court.

Jefferson County District Court case number: B183-859.

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