Villagers reject attorney’s opinion they must pay for water tower and windmill

Residents are rejecting an attorney’s opinion they must pay for the replacement of an ornamental water tower and windmill at Brownwood Paddock Square.

Attorney Kevin Stone on Friday released a memo outlining his opinion on the replacement of the water tower and windmill, which were demolished prior to the start of Hurricane Season as their rotting wood bases made them a safety threat.

Stone works for the Sumter Landing Community Development District Board of Supervisors, the parent board for the Project Wide Advisory Committee.

PWAC will hear from Stone when its members meet at 8:30 am Monday at SeaBreeze Recreation Center.

Villagers offered their thoughts on the structures ahead of the PWAC meeting.

“The water tower doesn’t provide water and the windmill doesn’t create energy, they just sit there because, once upon a time, the design team brought them to life,” said Villager Gary Cook.

The windmill and water tower at Brownwood Paddock were demolished prior to the start of Hurricane Season.

He suggested they be replaced with a shade structure similar to the one put in at Lake Sumter Landing. He said the shade structure is something that could actually enhance residents’ visits to Brownwood Paddock Square.

Several Villagers suggested that their fixed incomes should not be tapped for the windmill and water tower, which offered them little to no value.

“Neither my husband or I go to Brownwood, so why should we have to pay for something that is only useful to the Developer to sell homes? Take the money out of their pockets, not out of my fixed income. The Developer is also having us pay for a walking path at Lake Miona. A million dollars for something we can’t use. NO DOGS ALLOWED! So if I can’t walk my dog, it is useless to me. Tired of paying for projects for which the Developer should be responsible,” said Daphne Gunter of the Bailey Ridge Villas.

The wood is obviously rotating at the base of windmill
The wood was obviously rotating at the base of the windmill.

Resident Audrey White echoed those sentiments.

“I don’t agree that PWAC needs to rebuild these structures. These structures are not that old and apparently were not well constructed by the Developer in the first place. How many more of these cheaply built structures will the residents get stuck with in future years? With the amenity fees increasing so rapidly and the quantity and quality (such as executive golf courses) of the amenities decreasing, more and more residents on fixed incomes are going to be forced out of their homes,” White said.

Villager Nicholas Ellis said uncertainties in the economy make the water tower and windmill replacement the wrong project at the wrong time.

“There are still a lot of people who are on a limited income and with inflation hitting all of us it makes it even harder to live,” Ellis said.

Village of Gilchrist resident Tony Sutylo said it’s time to say good riddance to the rotted structures.

“It was a useless stage prop anyway. Don’t replace it. Nobody will miss it,” he said.

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