Bradenton man goes patriotic to protest code enforcement

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Posted: Wednesday, June 4, 2014 11:09 am

 

BRADENTON, Fla. -- A Bradenton home is causing quite a stir after a former military vet painted his home like an American flag to make a point to city officials.

Brent Greer, the owner of the house, says his freedom is being infringed upon by code enforcement, and he wants to send them a very clear message.

"We painted it to remind the city that this is still America, and that others people’s freedom of expression doesn't trump my freedom of expression."

Greer says he got the idea to paint his home after code enforcement cited him for various violations, which he says included having children’s toys in his yard, a broken window, and his home needing a fresh coat of paint. "It makes me extremely angry. You're coming to my property and telling me my appearance to my house, no safety issues or whatever, strictly cosmetic, doesn't meet the standard of some other elitist in this town, and I need to fix it…well that's crazy; this is America."

ABC 7 was told that a local realtor originally filed the complaint with the city because the Greers had a live Christmas tree in their yard. And while code enforcement investigated the tree, they found the other violations.

"We have housing standards in the city of Bradenton for the exterior and interior of homes. If we go somewhere and find violations, then we fine them. That's what we do as code enforcement," said Volker Reiss, Bradenton's Community and Code Enforcement Manager.

And despite being in a non-deed restricted area, code enforcement says the mildew visible on the siding is a violation that isn't acceptable. "The City of Bradenton is not the only jurisdiction in America who has rules. Wherever you are in America, you have to follow some rules," added Reiss,

But Greer says those rules are selectively enforced. And while he admits his home does need work, he says the violations are minor cosmetic issues that  should be corrected on his own timeline, not the city's. "My kids come first, so by the time I get around to painting the soffit or something,  it’s way down on the list; it's just not a priority. And eventually I'll get around to it. Sure, there's a lot of things I would like to do with this house, but life happens; we get another foster kid or something."

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Flag home in Bradenton

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5 comments:

  • wecan posted at 5:10 pm on Tue, Jun 10, 2014.

    wecan Posts: 1

    God Bless the Grer' for all they are doing. It's about time someonestands up for the Red, White & Blue.

     
  • asterix posted at 2:29 pm on Fri, Jun 6, 2014.

    asterix Posts: 1

    So let me get this straight.
    This numbskull has no time to correct the minor code violations on his house, but he DOES have the time to paint the entire house in a USA flag scheme? ???

    His being a vet is no excuse. I too am a vet, but I don't go around letting my home get code violations. If you have a property that needs attention, take care of it. He had to do that in the military, and I bet he can still pull it off if he needs to. He went to a lot more time, effort and expense to paint his house, and revel in his 15 minutes of glory with this newscast, than if he had just corrected the few minor issues that he still probably has.

     
  • Raster posted at 3:49 am on Thu, Jun 5, 2014.

    Raster Posts: 1

    Seems that they are harassing this man with requests that will be handled in time to satisfy his neighbors. The front and porch look nice in patriotic colors,

     
  • dain555 posted at 7:44 pm on Wed, Jun 4, 2014.

    dain555 Posts: 2

    Too bad people today have to ram their own way down the throats of others. Code enforcement should be ashamed of themselves with all the other buildings that are far worse than this one is. I hope that this veteran wins and then sues the realtor who turned him in!!!!!

     
  • dain555 posted at 7:39 pm on Wed, Jun 4, 2014.

    dain555 Posts: 2

    More power to the veteran and I hope that he wins! !!!! Code enforcement is ONLY for major structural and cosmetic issues that can affect health or cause major damage to others property NOT to be the enforcer of any one person's agenda. The realtor had ZERO cause to call so if it were me I'd sue the realtor for any damages that code gastopo has caused. The area where I'm from is more lenient than these people are here and most of them are from the north! !!!!

     

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