Two months ago, on June 6th, Town of Fort Myers Beach attorney John Herin (pictured) told the town council foreclosure lawsuits the council approved in April would be filed that week. They weren’t. Last week, Herin told the council that two of the five lawsuits were about to be filed. They haven’t been.
When Herin told the council that only two of the lawsuits were about to be filed last week, that didn’t sit well with Vice Mayor Rexann Hosafros who wanted to know why all five lawsuits weren’t being filed. As of today, none of the five lawsuits have been filed, 4 months after Herin was given the approval by council to take action.
The foreclosure actions are being pursued against a handful of beach property owners because the town says they have continuously ignored code violations against them, liens have been put on those properties, and the only remaining step is to seize those properties and sell them out from underneath the owners.
Herin told the council last week that the foreclosure lawsuits against the owners of the Key Estero Shops and 268/270 Nature View Court were being filed. As of Monday of this week, nothing has been filed.
The town says the the owners of the Key Estero Shops parking lot have been operating an illegal parking lot for years, charging as high as $40 per space for a day during peak season. The town put a lien on the property in September of 2020. The fines of $200 per day now total in the tens of thousands.
The town alleges that the owners of 268/270 Nature View Court, owned by Dania Carballo Ortiz and Daisy Garcia, rebuilt the house entirely without any permits and are now illegally renting that house out repeatedly for less than 7 days. The town has multiple code violations on this property. Two began in October of 2020 and now total over $57,000 each, with $250 being added every day. A third lien was recorded in 2021 with fines over $21,000. All in, this property is now over $125,000 in fines with $250 being added every day.
The other properties in the town’s foreclosure crosshairs are:
- 80 Avenue East owned by White Sand Properties. On this property the town has gone after them for working without a permit and having an unsafe structure. The town has three code violations against the property dating back to 2016 and 2019. As of March 2019 the fines had already exceeded $250,000 and $250 was being added to that every day.
- Sunset Grill owner Terry Persaud has the other two properties the town is going after. The parking lot adjacent to Sunset grill in Times Square and the restaurant itself for various violations.
Again, I’ll state. This attorney lives in west palm beach area. Now, think hard here, where’s the money. Wet palm beach. So what good attorney in their right mind decides I’ll drive two hours to my job in fort myers beach? Instead of making bank off the rich folks in west palm. Hmm. Maybe because he’s not able or capable of getting a job there.
If this attorney was your personal attorney, you would have fired him for incompetence. Time for FMB to do the same.
Pffffft … POOF, He gone!
Profound words from Phil, great comments. Dealing with the code enforcement department and the permitting process is frustrating for many. Considering they have such a hard-on for Terry Persaud it’s curious that they haven’t followed through on the foreclosure suit against him his properties.
I guess we not only need to re-elect the council members, but also fire the waste of money lawyer!!!!
So what is going on here? Is the lawyer not doing his job or is there something else in play?
It is really interesting and maddening how the building department works. In this case – it didn’t – and maybe the attorney is finding that their case has no standing given the delay in moving it forward. It is really incompetent that these cases have not been addressed in a more timely fashion or are they sitting on them as the fines add up. I always see it written that one of the property owners charges $40 a day for parking and the comments are that is outrageous, yet the town charges $5 an hour at their parking meters or $40 for 8 hours. I am not defending the property owners but maybe they tried to comply but were met with the never ending broken building permit process.
How many have applied for a permit to do work on your home? It takes weeks, if not months to get what is really a simple permit. There are many good people in the department, but the permit has to go through so many hands, it drags on. Then you have some employees are over zealous in their attempt to enforce codes to the point of repeatedly filing false violations reports to increase their stats. Bill Stout is one of those over zealous persons. He is rude, loud and completely incompetent. Twice he had made claims against me for permit violations that were completely bogus and wrong. When I complained to his superiors, they said he was excitable and laughed about him. I wonder how many others have been falsely accused by him.
I assume this attorney advised the board on the 15% window tint and maybe even wrote the law, that is now being recalled or the purchase of the $1mil lot to serve the sail boaters that was never used. When will it end.
It is clear that there are many cozy relationships in the islands politics that allow incompetent people to continue to work without being admonished for poor performance.
Sickening and costly to the tax payers!!
Nice job holding them accountable.