BELLEAIR BEACH - The problem of a property owner who has failed to complete some construction has reached the point of straining the patience of Belleair Beach officials.
The City Council held a special meeting last Thursday to take up the problem.
A discussion that took 75 minutes wound up with the determination that a solid timeline schedule will have been established by the council's June 5 meeting next Monday or there will be declaration of a breach in a joint stipulation agreement.
If it comes to that, Paul Marino, the city's lawyer, said he will ask that a fine of $100 a day be imposed. The fine time dates back to September 1, 2005, 278 days ago, and the math gives a figure of $27,800 in fines as of June 5 - and counting.
The stipulation agreement came about to avoid a drawn out court battle. The property owners in the case, Thomas and Sandra Brown, took an appeal from the city's code enforcement action to the Circuit Court.
While that petition for a writ of certiorari was pending, Marino and the Browns fashioned the stipulation agreement.
The review appeal would have explored statute and common law issues that are not yet settled law, Marino said.
What was pushing the council and Marino to the point of exasperation was that nothing seems to have been done. There is now a one-year deadline in place, dating from May 19.
In another piece of business at the special meeting, Mayor Rudy Davis outlined a proposal to have Heather Myles, a country singer, perform in Belleair Beach next September.
While the council was occupied with these matters at a special meeting, the vacancy on the council brought about by Ken Lucci's resignation continues.
Lucci resigned 11 weeks ago, the day after the election.
The council decided at its meeting May 1 to interview candidates in June by which time a quarter of a year will have gone by with the council holding an open seat.
Candidates are Robert Burrell, a lawyer; George "Tony" Gevo, who is in sales and marketing; Joseph Kane, also a lawyer, and Kathleen Mortensen, a medical technologist.
A questioning session is planned but there is a concern about that. Observers opine that the only issue should be qualifications.
Candidates in this limited forum should not, many think, indicate how they would vote on certain issues that may come before the council.
Other business still hanging fire in the city is the long-running lawsuit, Clearwater Gazette v. Mike Kelly, et al., which was thought to be near resolution, but is nearing its third anniversary.
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