UPDATE: City ‘red tags’ Walker's Electric at West Brook
Inspectors with the city of Beaumont red tagged an electrical job being performed at West Brook High School and filed a report with the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation, documents obtain by The Examiner Newspaper have confirmed.
According to the report sent to the state, workers were installing electrical service, on Wednesday, to portable buildings that are to be used as a temporary field house but no one had pulled permits from the city to do the job. Additionally, the two workers at the site did not have proof they were electricians and there was no journeyman electrician on the scene to monitor the work.
“When I got to the site, at West Brook High School, I observed one individual bending conduit and one watching,” states Scott Odom, Mechanical/Electrical Inspector for the city of Beaumont. “They had two ladders out, along with a drill motor and other hand tools. They were in an unmarked Chevrolet 2500HD pickup truck Texas License plate #9XV-B12. Research into the license number revealed it was registered to Calvin Walker on Roland Road in Beaumont.
“I asked if they each had an electrical license. They each said they did not have their license with them. They then stated that their journeyman, Calvin Walker Sr., had dropped them off and left. Ironically, the truck they had arrived in was still there. I asked if either had any identification and initially they said, ‘no’ but later each one showed me a credit card which had their photo on it. Their names were: Calvin Walker II and Terrell Smith. I then told them that they would have to leave tee site and that they were not legal to do electrical work without a license. They then picked up all of their tools, got in the truck, which they said they did not drive to the job site and drove off. Evidently, their journeyman would have to walk.”
When asked about this matter Danny Daniels, Chief Building Inspector for the city of Beaumont, said Walker’s Electric had not pulled permits for two of the buildings at the campus being worked on.
“We are performing some additional inspections out there today,” Daniels said. “There was work done prior to the permits being pulled and as far as we know that work was done by employees of Walker Electric.”
Daniels confirmed the job site for the two buildings in question had been red tagged by the city forcing the work to cease.
“We issued a stop order,” Daniels said, confirming that performing work with the proper license or a permit is a violation of state regulations. “We have referred this over to the state licensing folks. As I said they were working without a permit and we found some non-licensed people working, also.”
At the campus, two coaches were inside of one of the portable buildings, on Friday, using the light from an open doorway to make their way around inside. Neither coach would comment on the matter.
Calvin Walker declined to comment on the matter saying, “That’s not true, you can call Dick DeGuerin (his attorney). He knows all about it.”
Within a few seconds of ending the phone call Walker called back and explained that his son (Calvin Walker II) was not working at the site and that he had properly pulled the permits.
“I pulled the permit but it wasn’t released yet because they had to wait until BISD received their permits on the moving before they could release my permits,” Walker said. “But my son was not out there working. He was out there delivering materials but he was not there working.”
Walker is already the subject of an ongoing investigation by the state for faulty installation of electrical wiring at two temporary campused in the BISD that were the focus of this week's lead story in The Examiner. Additionally, he is under investigation by the FBI for alleged over-billing on jobs he has done for BISD.
Craig Eichhorn, BISD’s assistant to spokesperson Jessie Haynes was unavailable for comment because he was at lunch, according to a person answering the phone at his office. Haynes, who was in her office, did not accept a call for comment from The Examiner.
UPDATE: Response from Craig Eichhorn, BISD's assistant to Jessie Haynes, "Beaumont Independent School District’s Chief Business Officer Robert Zingelmann confirmed that employees are working diligently to meet City of Beaumont inspection requirements of two portable buildings each at West Brook and Central high schools. The portables are being prepared for storage and coaches’ offices. 'Our permits are now up to date. As the City completes its inspections, we hope to have full usage of the buildings on Monday morning,' he added."