HOA's rules for trash to prevent bear sightings a hindrance, residents say

Article Courtesy of Channel 9 WFTV Orlando

By Lauren Seabrook

Published March 16, 2017


APOPKA -- Some residents in an Apopka neighborhood are not happy with new rules meant to keep bears away from trash cans.

The homeowners association for Wekiva Springs Reserve sent a letter to residents telling them that their garbage cans must be put out after 5 p.m. the day before trash day but forces them to put the cans away by 6 p.m. on trash day.

“For a lot of people, that’s impossible to happen,” said homeowner Kevin Flanders.

Flanders said he and his neighbors are furious because very few people make it home from work before 6 p.m.

He also heels the HOA got it backward.

“They’re allowing you to put your garbage cans out at night, with garbage in them, when the bears are out. It makes no sense to me whatsoever,” Flanders said.

The rules came about after residents said bear sightings in the neighborhood became more frequent.

Resident Jacqulyne Jones said she noticed some people leave their cans out for days.

But now, the HOA will fine residents $100 a day if the cans are not in by 6 p.m. The fine can reach up to $1,000.

“I’m not saying they should fine it, but sometimes that’s the only way to get things done,” said Jones.

Flanders said the fine isn’t a smart solution.

“$100 a day is pretty brutal,” he said. “I mean, we’re paying them, then they’re penalizing us. I don’t understand that.”

The HOA hasn’t responded to Channel 9’s request for comment.