|Estero truck owner's tickets pile up|
Article Courtesy of The NEWS PRESS
By Christina Cepero
Published March 22, 2010
An Estero man feels like he's in the movie "Groundhog Day" when he wakes up every day to find a $25 ticket on his truck's windshield.
So far, the Stoneybrook master association patrol has slapped James W. Sauerwald with about 47 tickets, which totals $1,175, for parking a commercial vehicle in his driveway.
Property manager Alexandra Burgher said the rule has been in place since the gated community's inception.
"Ninety-nine percent of the communities have that in their bylaws," Burgher said. "When someone purchases into the community, they are aware that there is a set of rules."
James Sauerwald, 53, an eight-year resident, believes the association should grant him a six-month hardship waiver.
"I think that's the No. 1 reason people move into communities. So they don't live in a place where you have trucks parked or commercial vehicles with ladder racks or debris living next to you."
She said the office has gotten complaints about the truck.
"It irritates me to death when people don't follow the rules," said Carol Radde, 66, a seven-year Stoneybrook resident.
"If you can't abide by those rules, then you shouldn't be living in a restricted community."
Burgher said others in the community also have been ticketed for their commercial vehicles.
The Sauerwalds' truck has not bothered Les Gurdin, 67, who lives on the same street.
"I've seen pickups and cars in driveways, nothing of a commercial nature," he said.
The Sauerwalds refuse to pay the tickets.
Burgher said the board could attempt to collect the money in small claims court.
About 60 of Stoneybrook's 1,119 homes, or 5 percent, are in foreclosure, according to real estate agent Jack Mancini.
"They need to be flexible with the ones who are paying their dues and trying to make a living and not foreclose on their home," said Jolie Sauerwald, 48.
"We're to the point where why should we even try and save our home if they're not going to let up on us."