Condo resident said new rules wouldn't allow him to hang pride flag

Article Courtesy of WFLA Channel 8
By Jamel Lanee'

Published November 6, 2018  

TARPON SPRINGS - A Tarpon Springs man has filed a discrimination complaint in the Pinellas County civil court against his condo association.

Richard Hughes claims board members have proposed new rules that may prevent him from hanging his gay pride flag.

"The rainbow flag was going to be prohibited because only the American flag was going to be the law here," said Hughes.

Hughes is taking the battle over his flag to the courts.

"There's housing laws that fight discrimination. You can not discriminate," he said.

Hughes said the trouble began when he complained about other residents extending their patio space to the common areas on the property.


He said the board then decided to come up with new regulations about the common space areas, including flags.

Hughes' attorney, Carolyn Margolies said, "All of a sudden, they're talking about the flag, the rainbow flag. I think that it was retaliatory. I think not to have any issues with it for four years and then all of a sudden, it's an issue and it's focused in the new rules and regulations. It's clearly retaliatory."

The association's attorney, Jonathan Ellis said the rules will apply to everyone.

"The association has gotten in the past a number of complaints of what's happening on the common areas, as result of that, they are enacting a number of additional rules and regulations which have not passed yet. If you're a Florida State or a Gator flag, you can't fly a Florida State or a Gator flag."

A vote on the new rules is expected to take place in January.