Letter of the Week, Jan. 19-25

Manatee County code enforcement not enforcing codes

January 25, 2014 

I would like to compliment the valiant efforts by Manatee County Code Enforcement officers, honorable men all, in keeping free-range chickens from the subdivision in which I live. I have not seen one chicken.

Apparently, their efforts on the free-range chicken issue have kept them so busy that they haven't been able to stop real estate developers' signs from illegally appearing on the county right-of-way.

Every weekend, in Parrish, on Friday nights, after dark, some entity unknown to code enforcement erects approximately 80 signs along Parrish roads -- Fort Hamer Road, Erie Road, Chin Road, Old Tampa Road, Moccasin Wallow Road, Mulholland Road and U.S. Highway 301 -- for Neal Communities, Medallion Homes, DH Horton and others. Certainly the real estate company executives, all honorable men, would be aghast to know that someone has been breaking county zoning laws in Parrish for years by erecting such signs.

I have attempted to reach code enforcement boss Joe Fenton to notify him of these signs. I have left messages. He has apparently been too busy marshalling his forces against free-range chickens to return my calls. Joe Fenton is an honorable man.

Code enforcement was informed there are pictures available of the mysterious entity erecting signs. Code enforcement officer Ben Dornon, an honorable man, was disinterested. He said the best way to keep illegal signs from appearing was to take it up with the developers. And he has. In late September he issued two warnings.

However, developers' signs still appear weekend after weekend as if by magic. Certainly the development companies, good citizens all, would not litter the roadsides with their signs if they but knew.

Onward, code enforcement! Great job! Where would we be without you?

Morgan Stinemetz

Parrish

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