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Damaged Downtown Businesses Upset with NV Energy | Business

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Damaged Downtown Businesses Upset with NV Energy

LAS VEGAS -- Five months after a power transformer exploded on Main Street, some downtown Las Vegas store owners are calling out NV Energy. They claim the power company has done nothing to help them pay for the damage the explosion caused.

On billboards and boarded up windows at The Attic clothing store, a sign reads, "NV Energy blew up my building. They don't care. Shame on them."

A transformer explosion on July 11 blew out windows in a several block radius around Main Street. It damaged the vintage clothing and antique store The Attic. The store moved across the street to a building one-third the size of the original location.

"Every morning, I wake up with the idea that this is my last day in business," said Mayra Politis, owner of The Attic.

Politis put up billboards and signs on her business calling attention to the fact she has received no insurance settlement from NV Energy.

"Their first duty to the community is to help us get back to business, how we were before the explosion happened," she said.

A month long Las Vegas Fire Department investigation could not determine what caused the explosion. A fire spokesman says it is up to NV Energy to find out what caused it. NV Energy released a statement Thursday expressing "sympathy" for neighborhood businesses, and adding, "we are continuing to investigate and are evaluating information as we receive it, but cannot provide a timeframe in which issues will be resolved."

Mayor Oscar Goodman told Politis the city may be able to give business owners a bridge loan to make ends meet.

"Get a figure for me as to what it's going to cost to renovate it? Find out how long it's going to take, then I'll make a phone call or two to see whether I can work something out," Goodman said.

The Attic laid off four of its seven employees after the explosion. The Attic's owner is now two months behind on the mortgage for it's old, abandoned location. And now, it's insurance company says damage to the building's walls may require it to be torn down.

Other businesses on Main Street like Latino Auto Repair have also moved across town. Some are slowly rebuilding with what money they still have.



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