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Property owners seek flood relief from Taylor County

Posted at 11:32 PM, Aug 05, 2021
and last updated 2021-08-05 23:32:08-04

STEINHATCHEE, Fla. (WTXL) — What may look like a river at first glance is the reality Kirk Jones has to deal with on the road to his rental property.

"The problem is that the roads were not engineered here originally," Jones said. "There are areas I can show you where they essentially built dams that block the natural flow of water to this marsh system, so this area should drain beautifully."

Jones has been trying for years to get floodwater relief from the county, without much success.

"I've been here since 2016. I've seen this four times now," said Jones.

At one point, he even collected more than 600 signatures from neighbors facing similar struggles. He said, while he'd rather avoid legal action, it's not out of the question.

"We hate to do that. And obviously, if they know that there's a problem and it's not being addressed, then there can be legal consequences because people are suffering damages unnecessarily," said Jones.

We did speak briefly with county leaders about his concerns, but afterward repeatedly reached only voicemail.

Visitors to the rental property are now on board with Jones' mission after an unexpected start to their trip.

"The vision," said renter Craig Behen, "was to drive up to the beautiful lakehouse that we rented, and we discovered this flooded road."

They now hope Jones gets the resolution he's looking for so they can be met with dry streets when they return.