Landowner Sues Pasco County in Federal Court Over Taking

Pasco Made Unreasonable and Unconstitutional Demands of Property Owner

Dec 09, 2013, 13:29 ET from MansonBolves

TAMPA, Fla., Dec. 9, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- The owner of commercial property along Mitchell Blvd. filed suit against Pasco County in Federal Court today. The property owner, F.A.K. Enterprises, Inc., claims the County has imposed unreasonable and unconstitutional conditions on the development of the property.

The property in question is near the proposed intersection of Mitchel Boulevard and Pemberton Road. The County wants the landowner to connect the roads and complete intersection improvements which will cost up to a million dollars.

Brian Bolves, of MansonBolves is the attorney for property owner.

"Pasco County can't demand that property owners donate right of way for roads. Likewise, the County can't make you build off-site improvements not related to your project," said Bolves. "It's a matter of property rights."

As the property owner has began to market the site, the County has repeatedly told prospective buyers that their demand to construct the road and improvements will be a condition of development. The demand is not in proportion to the impacts of the development. The unfair and unreasonable demand has violated the owner's right to due process and equal treatment under the constitution.

The effect of the unreasonable and unconstitutional demand is to deprive F.A.K Enterprises of their ability to market and develop the property.

The complaint seeks a declaratory decree that Pasco County's Zoning requirements are unlawful. The complaint also seeks compensation from Pasco County for interference with owner's property rights.

The complaint alleges, that the County is improperly leveraging its police power to coerce any future developer to construct the road that the County would otherwise have to pay for itself.

"Governments cannot simply impose these demands on private property owners," said Bolves. "Property owners have very specific rights under for the Florida and the U.S. Constitution. What Pasco County is doing is not just unlawful, it has a chilling effect on business investment."

The lawsuit has been filed but Pasco County has not been formally served.  A summons has been issued and service of process has been initiated.

SOURCE MansonBolves