By failing to secure a county permit for his work, Cabrelli’s efforts were technically illegal under county code. Those permits signal county inspectors to check on repair work and to make sure the right materials are used in the right way, Brennan said.
Cabrelli, though, was unrepentant.
“It’s a lot easier to ask for absolution than approval,” he said. “All I’m trying to do is keep the neighborhood decent.”