The city of Topeka is paying a $16,000 demolition fee originally billed to a family grieving the death of an 18-year-old woman in a house fire last month.
City Manager Jim Colson said Monday that he apologized to the family of Morgan Duncan, who died in a Nov. 20 fire.
The bill was for the weeklong demolition of the home in which Duncan lived. Her mother received the bill last week, just days before a memorial service.
Colson said he ordered an investigation, and the city concluded that the demolition was necessary to put out the fire and keep fire and emergency personnel safe.
Colson said that made the city responsible for the cost of hiring a private company to do the work.