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Developer must spend $1.7M on handicap access

CHARLESTON, W.Va. — Charleston developer Douglas Pauley has agreed to spend $1.7 million to renovate 30 apartment complexes in West Virginia so they’re accessible to people with disabilities, according to a settlement with the U.S. Justice Department.

Pauley also must pay a $10,000 fine and place $100,000 into a special account that will compensate disabled tenants who believe they were discriminated against.

Tuesday’s settlement comes after a two-year investigation of Pauley’s apartment complexes, which receive federal tax credits.

“Housing is a fundamental human need, and it’s deeply unfair to deny persons with disabilities equal access to it,” said U.S. Attorney Booth Goodwin in a prepared statement. “Thanks to this case, the developer will be required to devote nearly $2 million to correcting and compensating for the harm that he and his companies have caused. That’s an important victory for West Virginians with disabilities.”

Under the settlement agreement, Pauley must replace cabinets in kitchens and bathrooms, fix sidewalks and change out doors – changes that will make about 750 apartment units accessible…

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