CLANSTON – Last month, First Consul Brizendine visited the Province of Colo, spending several days with Deputy Joe Halsey and Governor John Goldsmith. During this time, he toured the capital city of Clanston, learning from the governor about a long-standing legal and economic problem in the process. As this was one of the most significant events in the new province, Brizendine decided to interview Goldsmith about the issue, an unfolding legal battle which involves the incomplete Government House.
Brizendine: “When did you start building your house?”
Goldsmith: “Summer 2013.”
Brizendine: “When did the construction stop?”
Goldsmith: “It has been sort of continuing gradually, but it mostly came to a halt about a year ago.”
Brizendine: “Give me a brief description of the problem that occurred.”
Goldsmith: “Ok so a year ago we fired our contractor. He was pretty much milking money from us. We were paying him by the hour, and we consulted with other contractors and experts who told us that the work should have progressed much faster than it did. He also promised that it would be done within a year, and it wasn’t even close. Some inspectors came by and told us that some things were not up to code and we are pretty sure we will have to change those things. Then, the contractor sued us because we fired him and he considered the contract incomplete, because the house was not done. We are countersuing because he did not complete the terms of the contract. The problem comes from the fact that it wasn’t a written contract, it was verbal.”
The house, as evidenced by photos presented here, is not anywhere close to a completed state. One of the specific parts that was cited as not being up to code was the roof beams, which do not meet the load bearing capacity required by state law. Since the firing of the contractor, Goldsmith’s father has done some minor work on the structure by himself, though he has been frustrated by many setbacks. Despite all of that, Goldsmith lightened the mood with a bit of humor.
Brizendine: “This has obviously caused a lot of inconvenience for you guys, right?”
Goldsmith: “Yeah, the other day my dad said he was considering putting a match to the house.” *laughter* “That was after he fell while working on the house himself.”
Compounding the problem is the current living condition of citizens of the capital.
Brizendine: “Part of the problem is your living conditions, right? You have to live in a camper in your shed.”
Goldsmith: “Yeah, it’s small and the bathroom isn’t good.”
The governor had also stated that he has not been sleeping at home recently because of the conditions, instead preferring to move between the homes of various friends and family members. Goldsmith’s father’s legal advisor has instructed him to make no major changes to the structure so that its unfinished, unsafe state may be used as evidence against the embattled contractor. Further, Goldsmith’s father became so upset that he even offered a truce so that the construction could continue, but to no avail.
Brizendine: “You don’t know how long it will take to pursue the lawsuit or finish the house, correct?”
Goldsmith: “Yeah, partly because they told us not to make any major changes to the house while the lawsuit is ongoing. My dad even offered to drop the charges against the contractor if he would drop his lawsuit, but the contractor refused and continues to pursue it.”
Despite the tense situation, Goldsmith has assured the national government that his province will continue to function normally, albeit with less financial resources to put toward micronational endeavors.
Brizendine: “And this doesn’t affect the operation of your province except for the fact that you guys are losing money?”
Brizendine: “Well, know that the Grand Republic stands behind you in your efforts.”
First Consul Brizendine, along with Vice Consul Wernher, has pledged the full legal and moral support of the Grand Republic in resolving this issue in Colo’s favor, though other fiscal problems elsewhere in the nation prevent economic intervention. Emotions continue to run high, and pocketbooks to run low, in the 5th province.
Reporter: Jordan Brizendine