and Video Courtesy of WFTV Channel 9
By Tim Barber
June 2, 2014
LAKE MARY -- Some Lake Mary residents are crying foul against their homeowners association, after it started handing out parking tickets to people parked in front of homes.
Roxanna Saap and her neighbors in the Timacuan Neighborhood said their HOA is slapping drivers with $25 fines for cars that are parked in the street for more than six hours or overnight.
Channel 9 found out the roads in the neighborhood are public streets that are run by the city of Lake Mary.
“Nobody regulates HOAs in Florida. It’s pretty much a license to do whatever you want,” said Barbara Stage, an attorney with Stage and Associates.
Stage has represented home owners on similar cases.
She said it is a stretch that a court would decide that HOAs have the power to fine people for parking on public streets.
“They get away with pretty much anything they want to do unless someone has deep pockets to take them to court,” Stage said.
She said it could cost someone thousands of dollars to fight the fines.
When Channel 9’s Tim Barber went to speak to the Timacuan’s manager, her assistant went into her office to get her, and then said she was gone.
Saap just hopes the tickets disappear and that she won’t have to file a lawsuit.
“I couldn’t believe it, that they would go that far,” she said.