Contractor for Stamford Home Was Not Registered: Officials - NBC Connecticut

Contractor for Stamford Home Was Not Registered: Officials

State "will address the pertinent regulatory issues in due course."

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    Lomer Johnson, pictured dressed as Santa Claus, died with his wife and three grandchildren in the fast-moving blaze.

    The contractor who had been working at the Stamford house where five people died on Christmas morning was not registered to perform home improvement work in the state, according to the state Department of Consumer Protection.

    Michael Borcina, 52, of New York, is a friend of the homeowner and was the contractor working on the house, officials said.

    Fire broke out at the house on Christmas morning/ Officials said embers in a bag of discarded fireplace ashes caused the fire that killed Lily Badger, 10, 7-year-old twins, Grace and Sarah Badger, and their grandparents, Lomer and Pauline Johnson.

    The girls' mother, Madonna Badger, and Borcina, escaped the flames.

    Department of Consumer Protection officials said neither Borcina nor his company, Tiberias Construction, Inc., are currently registered to perform home improvement work in the state.

    “We believe that it is too early to speculate on the specifics of the home improvement work that has been described in media reports,” officials said in a statement released to NBC Connecticut.

    When asked about any action the Department of Consumer Protection might take, officials said they do not yet have enough information about what work was being done or had been completed.

    “We believe that it is appropriate now to allow friends and family to grieve for the tragic losses they have experienced. We will address the pertinent regulatory issues in due course,” the statement says.

    State law requires registration, which provides certain contractual rights to the consumer, including access to the Home Improvement Guaranty Fund, according to the Department of Consumer Protection.

    The state does not issue licenses for home improvement. All issues related to workmanship, permits, and certificates of occupancy are under the purview of town building officials.