Devastating earthquake brings up legal questions in Italy
Firefighters stand by rubbles in Amatrice, central Italy, Sunday, Aug. 28, 2016 where a 6.1 earthquake struck just after 3:30 a.m., Wednesday. Bulldozers with huge claws pulled down dangerously overhanging ledges Sunday in Italy's quake-devastated town of Amatrice as investigators worked to figure out if negligence or fraud in building codes had added to the quake's high death toll. (AP Photo/Antonio Calanni)
But prosecutors are also looking into the possibility that some property owners altered the structures of their homes without bringing them up to code. Special attention will reportedly be paid to a bell tower restored in 2009 and an elementary school renovated to withstand earthquakes in 2012.
And while Italy might have the physical resources to renovate the century-old buildings, the holdup often comes down to money.
Voice of America quoted one man saying its "impossible or prohibitively expensive to make changes within the regulations that are drawn up by the government in Rome."
Those that did recently renovate and violate building codes could reportedly face criminal charges. The timing of the investigation has angered some survivors and families still mourning those killed by the quake.
Money isn't the only pillar the towns have to overcome. Corruption also plays a role in a city's ability to move forward.
More specifically, Italian authorities are now tasked with keeping the mafia out of rebuilding efforts.
Italy's national anti-mafia prosecutor told a local newspaper "earthquake reconstruction is a tasty morsel for criminal organizations and committees."