Naples legal issues will not RIP

By Dawn De Busk

Staff Writer

NAPLES — It appears that two instances of land use violations — both of which have ended in consent agreements — will not rest in peace.

That is unless RIP means response from public.

The recent consent agreements were the topic during the public participation period of the Naples Board of Selectmen’s meeting on Monday. Only three board members were present to listen to the comments. Dana Watson and Christine Powers were absent.

One consent agreement was finalized this summer between the Town of Naples and property owners Tim and Kerrie Slattery. The most noticeable condition of that agreement was the removal of the deck on the Slattery’s home, which is located on Long Lake.

The other consent agreement between American Holding, Inc., and the Town of Naples was filed late last month.

On Monday night, Naples resident John Nostin stepped to the microphone.

“I want to talk about a couple issues that are closed — thank goodness,” he said.

First, Nostin addressed the Slattery consent contract.

“In my opinion, they were forced to sign it,” he said, adding their lawyer — through no fault of her own — did not provide the couple with all of the information necessary to make the best decision.

“I think they got nailed to the wall. The removing of the porch did nothing to improve the waterway,” he said.

“I hope the town has learned its lesson, not to go after citizens and throw the book at them,” he said.

Then, he turned his comments to the American Holdings case and the amount of money spent on it.

“Why in the heck did you do six appeals and spend all that money?” he asked.

During the fiscal year that ended on June 30, the town had been billed almost $100,000 for the legal services associated with American Holdings, Inc., versus Town of Naples.

“The amount spent could have replaced the roof on the town hall,” Nostin said, citing a few other necessities the money could have gone toward.

“That money could have been used to help people with fuel assistance. My God, you know how far $100,000 would go to help people in need?” he said.

He mentioned that since attorneys are in their field to make money, and since lawyers charge by the hour, there was no pressure for the town’s legal team to wrap up the case in a timely manner.

“I am going to take a line from Donald Trump: Stupid people. There are stupid people in elected positions,” Nostin said.

“You should have just said cut the bait and stopped,” he said, referring to the multiple appeals on the part of the town’s attorneys.

At the time, neither the selectmen nor the town manager responded to what Nostin had said.

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