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Opinion
Palm Coast Thursday, Nov. 14, 2019 3 weeks ago

LETTERS: City should charge vacant lot owners for mowing

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Also: Palm Harbor Golf Course development would be bad for neighborhood.
by: Guest Writer

City should charge vacant lot owners for mowing of swales

Dear Editor:

I want to commend and congratulate Executive Editor Brian McMillan for his recommendation to assess a yearly fee to the 17,000 owners of vacant lots in Palm Coast to cover taxpayer’s cost of mowing their swales.

While the $25 annual fee he suggested might need to be slightly adjusted upwards to cover the actual management, equipment and maintenance cost, this proposal would save Palm Coast taxpayers well over $400,000 a year while still being a substantial bargain for all vacant lot owners. 

Taxpayers should never bare the burden of maintaining private property. As a candidate for Palm Coast City Council, I endorse Mr. McMillan’s proposition and will work to implement it once I am elected in 2020. I also fully agree that we could give that $400,000 savings back to taxpayers in the form of lower taxes.

Ed Danko

Palm Coast

 

If residents pay for mowing, vacant lot owners should, too

Dear Editor:

As an almost 20-year resident of Palm Coast, I have to pay for mowing a very large swale on my over-size lot. I wholeheartedly agree with everything you said. Let’s ask those council members and get them to approve your plan!   

Robert W. Strong

Palm Coast

 

Untended vacant lots pose hazards

Dear Editor:

I live in C-Section on a canal. There are still a number of vacant lots in the C-Section. We have about five just on our street.

In the past three hurricanes, all the power outages were all the result of power line failures over vacant lots, due to over grown trees, vines, etc.

Periodically, the county or city will bring in a tree-trimming company to cut back the tree limbs over the lines. 

There should be some requirement for lot owners to not only maintain the swales, but preserve water flow. There does not seem to be any enforcement by city code enforcement for this. Many of the swales, where they have to drain under driveways, don’t function because the metal piping has collapsed or is filled with dirt.

In heavy rains, the water often floods the road or intersections due to backed up drainpipes under driveways.

If you live in a HOA (Grand Haven) and own a lot, you are required to provide your own mowing, tree trimming, etc.

Tom Scott

Palm Coast

 

Palm Harbor changes would be bad for neighborhood

Dear Editor: 

It is hard to believe that anyone outside the developer and the city of Palm Coast (with new development tax dollars) would be see anything positive about the proposal to add condos to Palm Harbor Golf Course.

For golfers, it would detract from the country club open area and make it more difficult to reach the golf course. If the proposed condos are sold as golf vacation villas, it would make tee times harder to get.

For the homes north of the course, they would now have condos in their midst, and this would no to lower property values. Access to Palm Coast Parkway would be more difficult.

For the single family homes to the south, their property values would also surely drop and they would face a large increase in traffic on Palm Harbor Drive.

The golf course land is all zoned for recreation use only, and that cannot be changed without a legal fight.

The city can get the driving range land as part of any deal to develop the marina. If the developer wants to play hardball and stop the city from using the driving range while the court fight drags on, the city can reconfigure the land that was envisioned for condos into a temporary driving range.

We certainly do not have to ruin several nice neighborhoods forever just to get the driving range land. 

Since the city was given the golf course for nothing, they have poured in over $6 million in tax dollars to bring it to life. If we want to talk about the negatives of a closed golf course, we should compare it to costs for one that was revamped and kept open!

If the city wants to work out something good for the residents on the marina, I’m all for it, but leave the golf course alone. 

Mike McGuire

Palm Coast

 

Hammock is the wrong place for boat storage facility

Dear Editor:

The county commissioners are going to allow a development called Hammock Harbour to proceed in The Hammock. The Land Development Code prohibits commercial warehouses in the A1A Scenic Corridor. The commissioners decided that a 57,000-square-foot building used to store 240 boats is not a commercial warehouse. 

The boats will be moved in and out of the Intracoastal using a forklift truck. A 10,000-gallon above-ground gasoline storage tank will be located along the Intracoastal. Residential homes border the property.

The project is located along one of the narrowest parts of the Intracoastal without a no-wake zone. Boats tied along nearby docks would not be protected from wakes produced by boats zipping along.

The following are some of the reasons given by commissioners to justify their decision: 

Commissioner Greg Hansen said that he talked to a lot of residents, and they said boat storage would be great. He said that fork lift trucks run on propane, and they’re not very loud. (Propane has nothing to do with the noise and beeping generated by a forklift truck.)  

Commissioner Dave Sullivan inferred that the new building will look better than what it looks like now. (That has nothing to do with the code.) He also pointed out that Hammock Harbour is next door to Hammock Hardware, which is commercial. (Hammock Hardware is 4,000 square feet.) 

Commissioner Joe Mullins implied that since neighborhoods in the area — Sea Colony and Hammock Dunes were mentioned — have restrictions on parking boats, they need a boat storage place. (Residents were aware of that restriction when they moved in.) 

He made no comment about the large septic system which will be built, despite having said about the proposed Beachwalk development that will be using the Palm Coast wastewater system, “I’m very concerned about septic tanks; I don’t want to see them out there at all.” 

This development is another step in the annihilation of The Hammock. It is a monument to greed and ill-advised growth.

Jody Bollinger

Palm Coast

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