News

Steve Chronister's financial troubles go well beyond the Grandview incident

Written by Rick Lee/The York Daily Record | Jul 16, 2018 7:09 AM
Steve Chronister.jpg

FILE PHOTO: Steve Chronister, a former county commissioner, stands in the clubhouse at Grandview Golf Club. (Photo: Paul Chaplin, For the York Daily Record)

Debt, foreclosure and lawsuits filed by contractors who were never paid all surround the man who once was one of the top elected officials in York County.

(York) -- Former York County President Commissioner Steve Chronister's troubles did not start with his videotaped confrontation with the local president of the NAACP and four other female African-American golfers at Grandview Golf Course.

The Pennsylvania Human Relations Commission has subpoenaed Chronister to appear at a July 20 hearing concerning the golf club incident

In 2015, the three-term commissioner withdrew from the Republican primary after 100 signatures on his nominating petitions were challenged. Running as an independent in the general election, Chronister placed fifth among the candidates running for three open seats.

A realtor and developer, Chronister also is saddled with millions of dollars of debt and lost his own home to foreclosure in 2017.

After falling behind on mortgage payments, the 2310 Fairway Drive home he owned with his wife, Julie, was sold at a sheriff's sale to a realty company for $202,500. The house sold to a private buyer in November 2017 for $239,000.

According to documents filed in the York County Judicial Center, Chronister has almost $2.7 million in judgments against him.

The biggest single debt --  $919,923.88 -- is to a Glen Rock company that Chronister contracted -- but allegedly did not pay -- to install sewers, water lines and streets for property development by Chronister's limited partnership -- Hallam Properties LLC -- in Paradise Township.

Chronister had plans to build a housing development on Beaver Creek Road, north of Route 30 near O'Brien's Paradise Cove restaurant and bar.

Hallam Properties defaulted on the property's mortgage terms by failing to pay municipal, school and county taxes totaling $11,658 resulting in a county tax lien. Court documents reflect that lien was satisfied on Oct. 25, 2017.

Springfield Contractors Inc. has since moved to foreclose on the property alleging nonpayment for the work the company completed.

Springfield's attorney -- Ed Paskey -- said the company has obtained a default judgment against Hallam Properties, meaning no one responded to the allegations.

"We are moving towards sheriff's sale ... with the hopes (Springfield Contractors) can work with the lenders originally involved in the project to find an acceptable resolution," Paskey said.

Paradise Village was to be a 48-unit neighborhood of ranch-style duplexes with a list price of $219,900 each. The contractor was to be paid from proceeds from the sales of the first 11 homes sold.

As it is, one home has been built. It is still for sale, on a short, dead-end street off of Beaver Creek Road. At the end of the street are a couple of backhoes surrounded by tall weeds.

Chronister's real estate license expired at the end of May, according to the Pennsylvania Department of State. There is no disciplinary action listed against him.

The Chronisters individually and as their limited partnerships also are facing judgments for defaulting on loans of $200,000, $300,000, $350,000 and $525,000. A Lower Windsor Township property on Zeigler Park Road in Julie Chronister's name is in foreclosure in the amount of $464,434.

Last year, Steve Chronister and another limited partnership -- Equine Meadows Associates -- were subject of a revival of a lawsuit in which a judge determined he owed at least $420,897 to the Equine Meadows Condominium Association.

In the original complaint, the association alleged that the developers and marketers of the condominium complex "gave buyers misleading and inaccurate information in the disclosure documents required to be provided to buyers of condominium units, failed to remedy various defects in construction and failed to complete improvements to be incorporated in the Condominium property, and mismanaged the Condominium while it was under (their) control."

Chronister could not be reached for comment.

This story comes to us through a partnership between WITF and The York Daily Record.

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