3 Marco Island homes face fines for not hooking up to sewer

— Three residential properties on Marco Island face fines for not hooking up to the city’s newly installed sewer lines.

Members of the city’s Code Enforcement Board unanimously issued motions to give the homeowners an additional 30 days to join the system. After that, the homeowners face a $250 per day fine until the hook up is complete, plus an additional $250 administrative fee.

The homes are located at 209 South Heathwood Court, 1504 Biscayne Way and 321 Hazelcrest Street, and are owned by Federal National Mortgage Association, Michael W. and Jennifer Sundholm and the Paul J. Stocklein Trust, respectively. Only the Heathwood Court home has undergone foreclosure proceedings and the former residents have moved out.

All homeowners were given notice of the meeting. However, none of them chose to attend.

In each case, homeowners were notified by mail in 2010 that construction would begin to install sewer lines and that the project would be completed in one year. At that time, the owners would be responsible for paying their portion to hook their residence to the city-wide system. After the deadline passed, homeowners were again notified and given three options: Use the city contractor to hook their home to the sewer line; hire a private contractor to do the job; or have a 10 year connection exemption to use a qualified advanced system at the residence. The average cost of the physical connection is approximately $1,500-$2,000.

“I think it’s the economy and that we’ve sat on them for so long,” said Code Compliance Supervisor Liz Carr of the reason the homeowners have yet to meet the completion deadline.

The bank-owned home was the most troubling for Carr, who told board members that none of the attempts to contact the bank have been acknowledged, although letters to the bank have been received and tracked through certified mail. Carr sought guidance from the board on whether to impose a fine, and if so, how much.

“I think you have to draw a line in the sand,” said member Dick Adams.

“The question now is how to get their attention,” added Carol Glassman, who noted that assessing a hefty fine might be one way to get a response and start a dialogue between the city and homeowners.

Since one of the homes is bank-owned, board member Tarik Ayasun worried that once a homeowner is found, Federal National Mortgage Association could ask code compliance to waive the fees to ensure its sale.

“They could not connect until they find a buyer,” he said. “Then the whole process of giving a fine doesn’t matter.”

Adams replied that extreme circumstances should determine whether any fines are mitigated.

© 2011 marconews.com. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

  • Discuss
  • Print

Comments » 10

marco97 writes:

The STRP was a great idea, it only costs $1,500 to $2,000 to hook up to the system plus a $15,000 - $20,000 lien against your property that is now worth less the you paid for it. It's just not worth paying for some people if the house they are in is worth 50,000 to 100,000 less then what they owe.

JohninMarco writes:

Great idea setting a fine. Now tell the residents that ALL the fines money goes to Collier County. Remember we have no judge on Marco and the Code board is a paper tiger. Just another waste of taxpayers money.

u2cane writes:

The mistake was in Deltona not having Marco on Sewer when they developed the land.

gladesgator writes:

It's done now, I'm glad I am on sewer now but also glad I did not have to pay for it.

NobodysFool57 writes:

in response to u2cane:

The mistake was in Deltona not having Marco on Sewer when they developed the land.

With the exception of commercial properties and high-density residential devlopments, sewers are not really necessary here. Septic tanks and their leach beds discharging into the sand they're buried in never fouled a canal, and the City can't prove that they did. Sand is the most economical filter media going. The only reason the Keys were sewered is the coral they were built on is porous, and WILL leach pathogens into surrounding waters. People like you are just not smart enough to recognize the blessings bestowed upon them. I hope you wise-up.

RayPray writes:

in response to NobodysFool57:

With the exception of commercial properties and high-density residential devlopments, sewers are not really necessary here. Septic tanks and their leach beds discharging into the sand they're buried in never fouled a canal, and the City can't prove that they did. Sand is the most economical filter media going. The only reason the Keys were sewered is the coral they were built on is porous, and WILL leach pathogens into surrounding waters. People like you are just not smart enough to recognize the blessings bestowed upon them. I hope you wise-up.

Very shrewd....

gladesgator writes:

This battle was fought and lost. Why keep beating a dead horse. My first impression is that septic is not the best approach for high density residential neighborhoods that exist in Marco Island. I lived on five acres with septic in another area in Florida and the pump would go out and during high rains the septic would overflow and stink to high heaven. Well pumps would be struck by lightning

ajm3s writes:

in response to NobodysFool57:

With the exception of commercial properties and high-density residential devlopments, sewers are not really necessary here. Septic tanks and their leach beds discharging into the sand they're buried in never fouled a canal, and the City can't prove that they did. Sand is the most economical filter media going. The only reason the Keys were sewered is the coral they were built on is porous, and WILL leach pathogens into surrounding waters. People like you are just not smart enough to recognize the blessings bestowed upon them. I hope you wise-up.

Stop talking sense!

Refreshingly sand filtered.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sand_filter

Lesson Learned:

Marco Island would rather centralize waste disposal than allow private septic systems to do the job. Was it for the protection of the environment or the perpetuation of centralized waste processing.

What will happen when the waste treatment system is breached by a storm or operational faults. All that concentrated waste in a single location rather than dispersed as in the residential areas.

The original Deltona plan was an efficient design, sewers for high concentration of development, i.e. commercial areas, the balance handled with private septic systems.

Again, was there a problem that needed to expand the sewer system or was it again a need to extend control at a high cost to its citizens?

Oh, well that is water over the dam, or is it spillway......

NobodysFool57 writes:

I hope everyone from here on out opts for the "defer for 20 years" plan. The City will run into a wall on their borrowing authority and be driven to insolvency. It's a shame, but I'm coming to believe this is the only way we can rid ourselves of these abusive tyrants.

blogsmog writes:

in response to NobodysFool57:

I hope everyone from here on out opts for the "defer for 20 years" plan. The City will run into a wall on their borrowing authority and be driven to insolvency. It's a shame, but I'm coming to believe this is the only way we can rid ourselves of these abusive tyrants.

absolutely!!! great post! time to rid the island of the Marco mafia and get back to the paradise we all came here to live in.

Share your thoughts

Comments are the sole responsibility of the person posting them. You agree not to post comments that are off topic, defamatory, obscene, abusive, threatening or an invasion of privacy. Violators may be banned. Click here for our full user agreement.

Comments can be shared on Facebook and Yahoo!. Add both options by connecting your profiles.

Features