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Holmes beach could tear down tree house

2:16 PM, May 13, 2013   |    comments
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HOLMES BEACH, Fla. -- A Holmes beach couple is worried about losing the tree house of their dreams, now that the city is telling them to tear it down.

Richard Hazen and Lynn Tran own a $20,000 two-story tree house on Holmes Beach.

The private tree house has a beautiful view of the Gulf and it is an ideal spot for the couple to relax or do yoga.

Hazen said that before he started construction, he spoke to a city building official to seek approval.

Hazen said after he told them he wanted to build a tree house, the official responded that he didn't need any paperwork or permits for such a project.

So, Hazen went ahead and built his tree house. Now the city has sent the couple a violation notice.

Holmes Beach said the tree house violates building codes and is hazardous to the public. If it is not taken down soon, the couple will be fined up to $500 a day.

"I can't afford to pay $500 a day," said Hazen.

The violation notice says the city may have been misled.

The report said: 'This is not a kid's playhouse in the backyard of a single family residence.'

The report also said: 'To be frankly blunt, if you did not receive a written response to a detailed submittal then no approval can be inferred from a casual conversation.'

The couple is exploring their legal options. They have also created a petition to ask the city to let the tree house remain.


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