Make us your home page

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Pasco officials refuse to get involved with Dollar General dispute at Pasco-Hernando line

DADE CITY — Homeowners in Autumn Oaks neighborhood walked away disappointed Thursday when top county planners refused to get involved in their dispute with the developer of a Dollar General that has an entrance into their subdivision.

Residents of the 265-home community at the Pasco-Hernando line wanted county officials to agree to enforce a deal being worked out between the homeowners association and the St. Petersburg-based developers. The conditions mainly involved adding buffering between the back of the store and houses to hide it from residents' view. Residents also were asking for a traffic study, which the company did not have to conduct under land use rules.

But county officials, sitting as the Development Review Committee, refused to act as enforcers of any contract worked out between the parties.

"Is your group going to pay the county?" Assistant County Attorney David Goldstein asked. "You're asking us to enforce a private obligation. Explain to me why the taxpayers of Pasco County should spend money to enforce these conditions."

Committee members agreed to postpone the appeal for two weeks so the groups could work out a private deal. Attorneys on both sides were present, but their clients were not, so nothing could be signed immediately. The homeowners group could seek relief in court should the developer not honor the agreement.

Steve Booth, attorney for the developer, said his clients followed all codes and expressed concern that the building's certificate of occupancy might be delayed. But County Administrator John Gallagher said the county doesn't have the authority to withhold it if all the rules were followed.

A handful of residents who attended the meeting said they weren't notified that the store was approved, They said they found after construction began. The rules say that only adjacent property owners must be notified. One resident did get a letter, but at the last minute, he said.

"This is disgusting," said resident Ilene Grim, whose home is in view of the store, which is nearly finished.

The county approved the paperwork for the store on Jan. 17. Autumn Oaks Homeowners Association filed an appeal.

The 9,026 square foot store would be on 1.6 acres at the southwest corner of County Line Road and Winding Oaks Boulevard in Hudson.

In addition to their landscaping and buffering issues, residents are concerned about potential traffic issues, too. They worry that the location of the store entrance along Winding Oaks Boulevard will encourage cars and commercial delivery vehicles to make a right turn onto Winding Oaks Boulevard into the Autumn Oaks subdivision, then make a U-turn or a right turn on Echo Mountain Drive, which runs directly through the neighborhood.

They asked for a traffic study and additions safeguards to minimize the impact and encourage customers to turn left on Winding Oaks Boulevard and proceed directly to County Line Road.

This isn't the first time in the past year that dollar stores have drawn residents' ire in Pasco.

In February, San Antonio officials approved a Family Dollar and Dollar General to open within 300 feet of each other. Family Dollar, prompted residents of the adjacent Rosewood neighborhood to express fears of traffic overrunning their community. Officials proposed blocking off a nearby street as a solution.

Dollar stores, which have thrived during the recession, have been popping up all over the country.

Last year the number of dollar stores (21,537) owned by the three dominant chains, Dollar General, Family Dollar and Dollar Tree, surged ahead of the number of drugstores (20,155) owned by Walgreen Co., CVS and Rite Aid. This year the gap widens as the trio opens 1,375 dollar stores compared with 400 drugstores.

Pasco officials refuse to get involved with Dollar General dispute at Pasco-Hernando line 04/12/12 [Last modified: Thursday, April 12, 2012 7:29pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Editorial: Rubio, Bilirakis owe Floridians answers on drug law


    Sen. Marco Rubio and Rep. Gus Bilirakis of Palm Harbor have some explaining to do. They were co-sponsors of legislation making it harder for the Drug Enforcement Administration to go after drug companies that distribute prescription pills to unscrupulous doctors and pharmacists, contributing to the deadly opioid crisis …

    Rep. Gus Bilirakis of Palm Harbor has some explaining to do. He was a co-sponsor of legislation making it harder for the Drug Enforcement Administration to go after drug companies that distribute prescription pills to unscrupulous doctors and pharmacists.
  2. Former Hillsborough school official files lawsuit alleging high-level corruption


    TAMPA — The fired human resources chief of the Hillsborough County School District is accusing district leaders and two School Board members of committing corrupt acts and then punishing her when she would not go along.

    Stephanie Woodford rose through the ranks of the Hillsborough County School District, then was fired as Chief of Human Resources on April 28. She's now suing the district, alleging numerous acts of corruption. [EDMUND D. FOUNTAIN | Times]
  3. District 6 Council candidate Justin Bean crisscrosses St. Petersburg


    ST. PETERSBURG – City Council District 6 candidate Justin Bean spent Thursday crisscrossing the city by bus, electric car and bike as part of a campaign to get his message out.
    His final stop was City Hall, where he spoke on the steps of the historic municipal building about what he referred to as the …

  4. Accident or murder? Jury soon to decide fate of Deandre Gilmore


    TAMPA — Deandre Gilmore has never disputed that it was a mistake to leave his girlfriend's 19-month-old daughter unattended in a bathtub on May 7, 2014.

    Tampa police Officer James Parsons testifies as a photograph of 19-month-old Myla Presley is displayed Tuesday at Deandre Gilmore's murder trial. The photo was taken before the girl's death. .[CHRIS URSO   |   Times]
  5. Deputies: Dunedin man had an arsenal and images of schools

    Public Safety

    Deputies executing a search on a Dunedin home on Wednesday expected to find signs that a 24-year-old resident was in possession of child pornography.

    Pinellas deputies say Randall Drake, 24, left, had an arsenal of weapons and images of schools.