Residents of a Florida neighborhood gathered on Monday to protest a recently enforced code that is putting their livelihoods in jeopardy.
More than 100 truckers, farmers, and landscapers gathered in Palm Beach County, Florida on December 19th to protest Palm Beach County’s Code Enforcement.
Since 2019, homeowners in the county have technically only been allowed to park one large vehicle on their property. The vehicle cannot exceed 12,500 pounds, and can not be taller than 26 feet. However, up until recently, the code was not enforced. Now, home and business owners in the area have suddenly begun racking up fines for parking their vehicles on their property as they have done for years.
“Our fines were in excess of three hundred thousand dollars which were rescinded to zero, and then they are starting it again with threatening of fines,” said Neil Elkin, Owner of Earth and Turf Landscaping Inc., to WPTV.
“We need help. We need to be heard. We’re the majority out here,” said Natalia Melian, who owns a small trucking company with her husband. “If I have to take the truck out of my house we’re talking about, I have to take it to a yard where there are no available yards anywhere,” said Melian.
The protests have gained the attention of State Representative Rick Roth, who is now working alongside the residents to call for a temporary moratorium to stop the fines until county leaders can revisit the issue.
“Now is not the right time to crack down on them. They’re starting to enforce regulations that they changed a couple of years ago,” said Roth. “It’s really causing people to have to move off of their property. These people are using their property to whether they’re a nursery grower or a commercial trucker they’re using their own homesteaded property in order to facilitate their business.”
A second rally is already planned for next month in front of the county’s code enforcement office.