Two Okanagan families left in financial hole after contractor allegedly skips town

Two Okanagan families are in a financial and literal hole after a pool contractor allegedly took their money and skipped town.

“We hired a contractor back in late May, he came in and did all the excavation work,” said Steve Croxford, a Kelowna resident.

“He told us he had all the permits in place to get going.”

However, the contractor had no permits, according to the city.

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It’s a case of buyer beware after Stephana Johnson and her neighbour Steve Croxford found what they thought was ‘a great deal’ after finding a pool contractor on Facebook.

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They decided to hire the same contractor to build both of their pools in neighbouring yards.

What happened soon after construction began was a shock.

“That’s where he’s abandoned it basically, we paid him approximately half of the money for the pool,” said Croxford.

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The two families said they hired a man who calls himself Jared or J-Hay and his company Pyramid Pools.

The pool contractor promised them two finished underground pools within four weeks — it’s now been almost four months.

Global News talked to multiple pool companies in Kelowna who say they’ve heard of this fly-by-night pool contractor who’s left multiple people high and dry.

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Shortly after the alleged fraudster skipped out on the job, the city sent an inspector to their properties.

They issued a cease work order on Aug. 1st and the property owners say the city demanded a 71,000 dollar bond and ordered them to remove the massive dirt pile that was left on city property.

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In ‘Leave The World Behind,’ 2 Families Face The Unknown Together

Rumaan Alam’s latest novel, Leave the World Behind, centers on a white family and an older Black couple who find themselves together in a beautiful vacation house on Long Island while a power outage — and possibly something much worse — grips much of the East Coast.

The novel, which is up for the National Book Award, explores class and race relations — and how we respond to crisis and fear. The juxtaposition between the luxury inside the home and the growing sense of uneasiness outside the house seems to speak to life during the pandemic, but Alam says the connection was purely accidental.

“I could not have foreseen the particular cultural moment into which I’m publishing this book,” he says.

Alam, who lives in Brooklyn, felt a particular tension between safety and confinement during the early days of New York City’s COVID-19 shutdown: “I felt really trapped earlier this year when it was March and it was kind of cold outside and the playgrounds weren’t open and there really was nowhere for me and my kids to go. And it’s hard to hold those two things in your head — that you can have the great fortune of having a place to be and still feel a little trapped there.”

That tension runs throughout Leave the World Behind: “There’s a discomfort in that metaphor of the home — the luxurious home that promises to be this family’s getaway — that eventually becomes this family’s trap,” Alam says.

Interview highlights

On the novel’s opening chapters, in which the white family who is renting the house opens the door in the middle of the night to an older Black couple who claim to be the home’s owners

The reader is meant to feel a bit of discomfort there because,

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Families still waiting to see loved ones


AUSTIN, Texas – About half of the residents at a nursing home tested positive for COVID-19 in recent weeks. Even in the face of the outbreak, some families urge officials to let them in to care for their loved ones.

“It’s some of the most pathetic circumstances you could put someone in right now,” said Rachel Finney, whose 90-year-old grandmother tested negative for the disease in Pflugerville Health Care Center, about 15 miles north of Austin. “Having a visit with family … would do a lot for her state of mind.”

Finney is among thousands of Texans waiting for the chance to see their loved ones in person inside nursing homes for the first time in six months.

Although state officials started allowing visitors inside facilities in August, the requirements that facility operators had to meet – including testing staff weekly and being COVID-19-free for at least two weeks – were so stringent that fewer than 10% of nursing facilities opened up.

Thursday, the state cracked the doors to all nursing homes, allowing up to two designated family members per resident to come in at any time to care for their loved ones. Some nursing home resident advocates fear the move would open the floodgates to COVID-19. Family members  argued that the disease can spread even under lockdown protocols that prevent them from entering.

“Their loved ones (inside nursing homes) are already being exposed to people,” said Mary Nichols, a North Texas resident and leader of Texas Caregivers for Compromise, a 2,900-member group advocating for family access into nursing homes. “Plumbers are going in. IT techs are going in. Nursing students

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Over 2.5L kids in childcare homes to return to families

Adoptions on the rise locally during the pandemic [Video]

Adoptions on the rise locally during the pandemic

COVID-19 has turned life as we know it upside down. For some, family planning is delayed or deterred, but one local family says adoption is different, but not impossible.

Credit: WKBW Buffalo     Duration: 02:13Published

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