PASCO COUNTY, Fla. — If you live on a public street, your taxes pay for the repairs and maintenance of your road.
- Residents on some private roads having to pay for repairs
- County says there might be a case for code enforcement
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But in many parts of Tampa Bay, homeowners are directly responsible for road repairs. Those are private roads.
When that self-repair process breaks down, the results can be dangerous.
Joe Morris has lived in his New Port Richey home for 20 years. His road sits on the boarder of areas managed by New Port Richey and Pasco County, yet neither does repairs or maintenance.
"I've spent close to a thousand (dollars) and doing repairs. I even had to repair — me and the woman next door here, Barbara Clark, when she lived here — we paid a man that lived over on Bowe $150 to come over here with a dump truck and just put down lime rock."
During heavy rains, holes on the road — some of which are more than six inches deep — fill with water and become virtually invisible.
Morris's van has sustained $4,000 in damage. He'd like help to force residents to maintain their part of the road like he does.
One option is to petition the county to take over maintenance.
But that involves a majority of the property owners approving and then bearing the cost of the repairs. And in this situation, many of the homes are empty with absentee ownership who would never approve.
That puts Morris in the position to pay more on top of what he's already done for his property.
"What they do is they put in sidewalks and streetlights and I lose my property," he said.
Real Time Traffic Expert Chuck Henson spoke with Pasco County and learned there may be some wiggle room. Since the residents also own the road, there might be a case for code enforcement.
Pasco County encourages residents with code enforcement concerns to report issues to customer service. Most complaints may be reported anonymously.
The ability to remain anonymous is important to note. Many told Chuck they haven't reported these issues because they fear retaliation due to crime and drug issues nearby.