Handyman gets banned by Town of Evans

TOWN OF EVANS, N.Y. (WIVB) – A Southtowns contractor is barred from doing business in the Town of Evans, because of so many complaints against him. Michael Gajkowski, 33, is accused of leaving home improvement jobs unfinished, and homeowners holding the bag.

Paula Jamison hired Gajkowski to fix her roof, back in July, but after a few minutes, she says she asked him to stop and return her money. Jamison didn’t get her money back, so she went to police, and then contacted Call 4 Action.

“I hope it never happens to me or anyone ever again,” said Jamison, on paying $750 to get her roof fixed, but the roof didn’t get fixed and her $750 is gone. Paula hired Gajkowski, a local handyman, but she says once he climbed on the roof, the cost started going through the roof.

“Well, this is bad, and this is bad, and oh there’s two layers here,” Jamison said Gajkowski told after he started removing the roof shingles. But she asked Gajkowski to get to the point, she said he told her, “That means it is going to cost twice as much.”

So Paula said she stopped Gajkowski, and asked for her money back–minus his cost for getting the job started. That when Jamison said Gajkowski told her he did not have her money.

“I said, I just gave it to you 12 hours ago,” and the contractor told her he had to pay his men. “So I looked at the young man that was with him, and I said ‘did Mike you for this job already?’ This kid just put his down.” That’s when Paula contacted police.

Evans Police Chief Ernest Masullo said Paula is one of many complainants in the town, “We’ve probably had close to a dozen complaints where he would start work and then just disappear, and then not finish it.”

Masullo said those complaints have amounted to thousands of dollars homeowners have lost to Gajkowski, “He will ask them for money to buy supplies, or material, and he disappears. But he starts the job before he leaves.”

Masullo says Gajkowski has no insurance, pays no Workers Compensation, nor will town officials even issue him a building permit, so the town is taking an extraordinary stand.

“Michael has been warned by the town building inspectors, the police, that he is not allowed to do any contracting work within the Town of Evans,” said the chief, who also said the Town of Evans can be a valuable resource for homeowners because most contractors are required to get a town plumbing license.

“They go through a background check, through the Police Department. They have to supply insurance, they have to supply a bond, so they are legit, and we can tell you who is good, and who is not good.”

We reached Michael Gajkowski at the home of a relative, and asked if he could respond to these claims, to set the record straight, but Gajkowski declined comment.

If you believe you have been shortchanged by Michael Gajkowski, you can file a complaint with Evans Police at 549-3600, and Masullo says those complaints are being forwarded to the New York Attorney General.

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