That Old Lets Make-Believe This is a Existing Non-Conforming Land Reuse, Scam? & Shame on the City Administration


Dear Greg:
Two phrases that you used in your Saturday, January 4th, 2014 email sent at 10:56 AM and addressed “to all” really worry me: “re-use of the property at 619 Lemon Street” and “city staff will share with you the thought process that we are using on each of these issues”.< >
First: “reuse of the property at 619 Lemon Street:
The portion of this parcel that Jack Wiles bought that abuts our entire neighborhood and the houses on Powers Avenue and Ruth Street is Neighborhood Preservation.  It was NP when I bought my property in 1979.   It was never anything but a wooded area.  It was not used for anything by Billy Wohlhuter.  It stood as a forest for decades.  Billy stated at one point in 2007 that he was going to plant some peppers back there. That may or may not have occurred.   Nothing else was ever back there. Nothing else.  The use of the term “re-use” we believe is a set up in advance for Jack Wiles and the city to be able to justify boat storage by our homes with the implication that there was always boat storage there.  There was never any boat storage near our homes.  Billy of course was a professional fisherman and did store his boat by his seafood store and on property zoned commercial.   My point being with great redundancy: there was never boat storage behind our homes on this portion of the parcel zoned Neighborhood Preservation. The argument now that Jack Wiles can also use this area for boat storage since it will just be more of a legal nonconforming use from the former owner will not fly.
Second: the use of the phrase “thought process that we are using on these issues.” 
We are a city with a Land Development Code in place that is very specific.  It discusses buffers between residential and commercial areas very specifically among other things. This specificity eliminates the need for a “thought process”.  It allows all homeowners/taxpayers to read the codes in black and white at any time and know what they can expect from their city and what is allowable in their neighborhoods and what may occur at some future date.   It also allows potential developers to know what they will encounter as requirements when they consider a specific parcel for development, i.e. buffers between them and an abutting neighborhood. No surprises for anyone.  It enables us all to know that elites, whether real or perceived, are not given special treatment because of connections or influence or frankly greater financial means than the rest of us may have to sway officials or arguments with surveys, lawyers, etc.  It allows us to know that nothing is going on that could be termed arbitrary or discretionary or preferential. We should not have to worry as neighborhood residents that to defend our interests it may become necessary to mortgage our homes to hire lawyers or title companies.  We should be able to count on our city to uphold established procedures and the Land Development Code which states clearly: an approved site plan is required before work begins, that the city will ensure that all work that flows from that plan is permitted, that the city will inspect regularly as work proceeds on those issued permits and yes, that the city involve the affected neighborhood before, during and after the process so that we know we have been treated fairly and with consideration as a residential neighborhood and that work was done within the scope of existing laws/codes/ordinances.  It’s a simple straight forward list of requirements.   Had the city insisted that Jack Wiles and his project follow its own rules, this firestorm for the city would not be occurring. 
From the various e-mails received, I believe we have several issues that relate to the reuse of the property at 619 Lemon Street that will need to be discussed.  These include whether any trees were removed or permits were required when the site was acquired by the B.D.W. Land Holdings LLC in late July.   In addition, City staff will be prepared to discuss the future land use designation, zoning and legal non-conforming use status of the property.  Lastly we know that we have a property line dispute which affects several property owners.   City staff will share with you the thought process that we are using on
each of these issues

Dianne Templeton Gardner
618 Ruth Street
Port Orange, Florida 32127


Mr. Kisela,

In your email you indicate that there will be a discussion regarding legal non-conforming use status of the 619 Lemon St. property. Since this is the first we have heard of that, I am requesting information regarding that status prior to our meeting on Wednesday. I am requesting this so that the residents have time to understand this new information and are able to formulate questions.
Dru Urquhart
511 Powers Ave.

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