Wheelchair ramp causing controversy at Bardstown home

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by Claudia Coffey

WHAS11.com

Posted on October 7, 2013 at 6:28 PM

Updated Monday, Oct 7 at 11:37 PM

BARDSTOWN, Ky. (WHAS11) -- A wheelchair ramp used by a 6-year-old child is at the center of a dispute between the girl's family and the city of Bardstown.

The Planning and Zoning Commission for Nelson County said the family  never got a permit to build a wheelchair ramp for their daughter, and if they don’t get up to code quick it will have to come down.

"My daughter needs this ramp. It's her only way in or out of the house," Stephanie Hadley said.

The small ramp outside of Stephanie and Scott Hadley's home has opened up a whole new world for their daughter Faith.

"She can get in and out of the house by herself. she can put her prosthetics on and walk down the ramp with her walker," Stephanie Hadley said.
 
Faith was born with a rare birth defect which requires her to use prosthesis and a wheelchair. This summer, the landlord and some volunteers decided to pitch in and help the Hadley's build a ramp to make life a little easier.

It was for a while, until the Hadleys and their landlord were notified that they were not in compliance with an ordinance.

"It's just a ramp. Why do you need a building permit? It's not like we are building a room or something onto the house," Stephanie Hadley said. 

Nelson County's Planning and Zoning said they've sent three letters to the Hadley's landlord, and as of Monday, the landlord said he is still trying to work something out.

The landlord and family can ask for a waiver to keep the ramp which will cost around $200 and must be approved.

Planning and Zoning said they are not trying to be difficult, but they have to follow the law.

"The Planning Commission is just simply following the city's regulations. Unfortunately we have to be in the middle to enforce and regulate those regulations. We want them to come in and apply for the variance, reconfigure it or take it down," Janet Johnston-Crowe with the Nelson County Planning Commission said.

The Hadley's said they want Planning and Zoning to make an exception. If not the ramp must come down by Friday

"It's just a code and rules are meant to be bent. I think they can make an exception on this," Scott Hadley, Faith's stepfather, said.

Click here for the family's facebook page.

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