Connect with us

Local News

State Building Codes Office, on Atwood’s case: We’re coming on a fact-finding mission



Kristie Sours Atwood

FRONT ROYAL – Bentonville resident Kristie Sours Atwood, who has unresolved issues with the new home she had built following a fire that destroyed her family home in 2015, addressed the Warren County Board of Supervisors in late June, imploring them to help her resolve the issues that remain three years after work began on her new home.

While the case did not seem to generate much interest amongst the elected officials, it did pique the interest of the State Building Codes Office.

Officials from Richmond have notified  Warren County Building Official David Beahm that a team from the State Building Codes Office Technical Review Board will arrive at the Warren County Government Center on August 13 to hold an informal fact-finding conference regarding Ms. Atwood’s appeal.

Ms. Atwood’s home burned to the ground on March 15, 2015, and she subsequently hired Buracker Construction LLC, whose agent was listed as Martha Buracker, to rebuild her family home.

Atwood has previously stated that despite major issues with the home as building progressed –as well as unfinished items –the Warren County Department of Building issued a Certificate of Occupancy on July 19, 2016.

David Rushton, of Able Building Inspection, Inc. found over 125 items requiring attention in the wake of the county permitting, according to a report submitted at a Building Code Appeals Board proceeding on May 22.

Despite the fact that Ms. Atwood and her family have been living in the home, with repairs not made, the County did eventually perform a partial re-inspection March 16, 2018, after which a Notice of Violation was sent out regarding some, but not all of the issues that needed correction.

David Buracker, the husband of Martha Buracker, who helped build Atwood’s home, sits on the Building Code Appeals Board and has had to recuse himself from the May 22 hearing, as well as two subsequent proceedings.

Royal Examiner has confirmed the following:

Virginia Department of Occupational Professionals (DPOR) found that Buracker Construction LLC is an unlicensed entity and has never held a contractor’s firm license in the State of Virginia, though it has operated as a business in Warren County since 2002.

Mary Broz-Vaughan, of DPOR, wrote in an April 26 email, “Our records do not reflect a contractor license under the name BURACKER CONSTRUCTION LLC.”

“Board for Contractors Regulation 18 VAC 50-22-230 requires licensed contractors to operate under the name in which the license is issued. Contractor licenses are not transferable, and a change in business entity (e.g., from a sole proprietorship to a corporation) requires a new license pursuant to Regulation 18 VAC 50-22-210.”

  • Martha T. Buracker trading as Buracker Construction is licensed in Virginia, according to DPOR.
  • Buracker Construction, LLC is not licensed in Virginia, according to DPOR.
  • Martha Buracker filled out a Warren County building permit application on July 8, 2015, in the contractor name of Buracker Construction, LLC  and was granted a permit by Warren County in the name of Buracker Construction.
  • Martha Buracker signed a consent order on June 12, 2017, after being found in violation of Virginia code and agreed to remedial education and payment of fines totaling $950 to avoid suspension of her Buracker Construction license.
  • Virginia Attorney General’s Office Investigator C.M. Olson confirmed to Royal Examiner in May that the office is investigating the complaint as a possible violation of the Consumer Protection Act.
  • On April 13, in a meeting with Royal Examiner Editor Norma Jean Shaw, County Administrator Doug Stanley and County Attorney Dan Whitten, Ms. Shaw was told by Stanley that the issues between Ms. Atwood and Ms. Buracker were nothing more than “a friendship between two people that had gone sour during the time the house was being built.”
  • From the time the Burackers began their Warren County construction business in 2002 until late June/early July 2018, the Burackers did not hold a County business license.

It is likely that the State’s fact-finding trip to Front Royal regarding this case will not be the last we hear of it.  In fact, Beahm said via email that he was awaiting the official decision of the local Board of Building Code Appeals.




  1. Newman

    August 3, 2018 at 1:29 pm

    How can you pull a permit in this jurisdiction without a simple county business license? Every other jurisdiction you are required to have: Valid Contractors License and a County/City license. This “contractor” appeared to have none! C’mon man! This county has some high paid administrators, that don’t appear to have the proper checks and balances working for the public.

  2. Jim Irre

    August 3, 2018 at 5:56 am

    A small part of the “good ol’boy” network is seeing the light of day. The company is “owned” by Martha for obvious tax reasons. Wonder if she complies with the requirement for the percentage of participation in the business required by “owners” of said business?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Get Your Zombie Walk Shirt!

King Cartoons

Upcoming Events

4:00 pm Introduction to Watercolor @ Art in the Valley
Introduction to Watercolor @ Art in the Valley
Oct 17 @ 4:00 pm – 6:30 pm
Introduction to Watercolor @ Art in the Valley
This class provides a hands-on experience for painting with watercolors, and meets once a week for five weeks. Each week we will work to build a solid foundation in technique. Materials are provided, but feel[...]
6:00 pm Drawing Studio @ Art in the Valley
Drawing Studio @ Art in the Valley
Oct 18 @ 6:00 pm – 8:30 pm
Drawing Studio @ Art in the Valley
All drawing levels welcome. In this class we’ll work on creating drawings from still life, plaster casts, or reference photos. Learn and develop your abilities in composition, proportion, and rendering with artist and instructor Michael[...]
6:30 pm Learn how to save money with Sol... @ Marshall Community Center
Learn how to save money with Sol... @ Marshall Community Center
Oct 18 @ 6:30 pm – 8:30 pm
Learn how to save money with Solar Energy @ Marshall Community Center
Are you a resident of Clarke, Frederick, Fauquier, Loudoun, Rappanhannock, or Warren County who wants to go solar? Now’s your chance! Neighbors have formed the Upper Piedmont Solar Co-op with the help of Solar United[...]
8:00 am Front Royal Farmers Market @ Near the Gazebo at the Village Commons
Front Royal Farmers Market @ Near the Gazebo at the Village Commons
Oct 20 @ 8:00 am – 1:00 pm
Front Royal Farmers Market @ Near the Gazebo at the Village Commons
A Farmer’s Market like no other. Come visit us in Front Royal for a festive time. All domestic products produced by the seller!
10:00 am Pumpkin Patch Festival @ Riverton United Methodist Church
Pumpkin Patch Festival @ Riverton United Methodist Church
Oct 20 @ 10:00 am – 5:00 pm
Pumpkin Patch Festival @ Riverton United Methodist Church
Riverton Church (55 E. Strasburg Rd, Front Royal, VA 22630) | October 20-21 from 10am-5pm Free, please bring the whole family for this fun filled day!