Make us your home page
Instagram

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

A+ Concrete turned down as Pasco commission sides with residents

NEW PORT RICHEY — Pasco County commissioners Tuesday sided with Odessa residents who say a nearby concrete plant should go because it creates noise, vibrations and dust clouds that coat their homes and cars.

"Put it this way, I can clean my black mailbox and two days later it is completely coated with dust," said Ashley Lakes resident Janet Felts, who added she worries about respiratory problems in her and her two children.

Felts and other residents of the 311-home enclave south of State Road 54 have complained for years, saying Pasco County staff shouldn't have approved the plant next to a residential community.

At a two-hour hearing Tuesday, commissioners sought to address those mistakes while deciding a legal argument about whether A+ Concrete should stay.

"I can tell you that errors were made," Chief Assistant County Attorney David Goldstein told commissioners. "They were made in 2006 and 2011. Staff never looked at the zoning and never looked at the land use."

Goldstein argued that despite receiving permits, the plant shouldn't have opened under rules that require concrete plants at industrial sites.

Officials had sought to hold a zoning hearing with the company last year, but A+ opted to argue "vested rights," a legal concept that protects homes and businesses from eviction because of vested rights to a property.

In this case, A+ Concrete attorney David Smolker argued the company operated in good faith, sought permits for its dry-mix and wet-mix concrete business and received them. As a result, it shouldn't be forced to move.

Commissioners unanimously disagreed, arguing that a permitting mistake doesn't give a business the right to skirt planning and zoning rules.

It's unclear what will happen next. Smolker said his client might go to court. Commissioners said they would be willing to fast-track approvals to help the company relocate.

In other business, commissioners created a Municipal Service Boundary Unit in Trinity to pay for 42 acres the county bought to stop an apartment project.

About 1,550 homes within the boundary — in Heritage Lake, Riverchase, Riverside Village Estates and Southern Oaks — will be assessed $67 a year over 15 years to pay back the $3 million purchase. The land will be set aside for a park or remain as open space, the way it is now.

Most of the 150 residents applauded the deal. State Rep. Richard Corcoran, R-Trinity, helped secure $1.5 million from the state to cut the annual assessment from $135 to $67. He said he's "very confident" he can secure another $1.5 million next year to eliminate the assessment.

Not everyone was pleased by the assessment idea, though.

"Your proposal to levy an additional tax burden on targeted property owners as a source of funds to pay off a developer represents a total abdication of your duties and responsibilities to oversee responsible and compatible development," Southern Oaks resident Cindy Fargo said.

Rich Shopes can be reached at rshopes@tampabay.com or (727) 869-6236.

A+ Concrete turned down as Pasco commission sides with residents 06/24/14 [Last modified: Tuesday, June 24, 2014 9:51pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Review: Mumford and Sons shower Amalie Arena with love in euphoric Tampa debut

    Blogs

    There are releases, and then there are releases. And minutes into their concert Wednesday at Amalie Arena, Mumford and Sons gave Tampa the latter.

    Mumford and Sons performed at Tampa's Amalie Arena on Sept. 20, 2017.
  2. FEMA to open disaster recovery center in Riverview

    Hurricanes

    The Federal Emergency Management Agency said it will open a disaster recovery center Thursday in Riverview for Hillsborough County residents impacted by Hurricane Irma.

  3. Life sentence for man convicted in killing of brother of Bucs' Kwon Alexander

    Bucs

    An Alabama man who shot and killed the 17-year-old brother of Bucs linebacker Kwon Alexander in 2015 was sentenced to life in prison Wednesday, the Anniston (Ala.) Star reported.

  4. Remember him? Numbers prove Ben Zobrist is one of greatest Rays of all time

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — The first foray back to the Trop by the best manager the Rays have had obscured the second return visit by arguably the second-best player in franchise history.

    Figures.

    Chicago Cubs second baseman Ben Zobrist (18) grounds into a double play to end the top of the third inning of the game between the Chicago Cubs and the Tampa Bay Rays at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, Fla. on Wednesday, Sept. 20, 2017.
  5. GOP's new repeal bill would likely leave millions more uninsured, analyses suggest

    Health

    WASHINGTON — The latest Republican bid to roll back the Affordable Care Act would likely leave millions of currently insured Americans without health coverage in the coming decades, and strip benefits and protections from millions more, a growing number of independent studies suggest.

    Vice President Mike Pence listens as President Donald Trump talks to reporters about the Graham-Cassidy health care bill during a meeting with Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi at the Palace Hotel during the United Nations General Assembly, Wednesday, Sept. 20, 2017, in New York. [Evan Vucci | Associated Press]