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Pasco considering suing club over erosion

Pasco County might sue Magnolia Valley Golf Club over an erosion problem that the county says threatens to flood hundreds of homes.

The county attorney's office wants Pasco commissioners to approve filing a lawsuit to force the club to fix an erosion problem the county believes is caused by a pump house the club operates. Commissioners will take up the matter next week.

The erosion is occurring beneath the pump house, which is on a canal bank between the golf course and the Carlton Arms apartment on the east side of Rowan Road. The erosion appears likely to cause the pump house there to collapse, which could flood numerous homes, damage power poles, New Port Richey sewer lines and a guardrail, according to the county.

The county can correct the problem if another pump temporarily is installed upstream, but Chief Assistant County Attorney Karla Stetter said the golf club thinks the county should pay the estimated $90,000 bill.

The club contends the erosion around the pump house is caused by stormwater run-off from a poorly designed Rowan Road, said its attorney, John Brunson. The club says the county should handle the problem.

However, the engineering firm responsible for that road, Casson Engineering, found no evidence of stormwater from the roadway causing erosion there.

Stetter wrote that up to 622 homes in the Magnolia Valley area might be flooded "to some degree" if the pump house collapses.

Though the club operates the pump house, it is owned by the Pasco Pump Co., which Stetter also wants named in the suit.