Public meeting in Land O’ Lakes to discuss sinkhole repair options

PASCO COUNTY, Fla. (WFLA) – Pasco County is working to restore normalcy to a neighborhood impacted by a massive sinkhole.

On Saturday afternoon, the county met with the residents to discuss possible repair options.

The room quickly filled with people living close to the sinkhole in the Lake Padgett Estates neighborhood.

“It is really important to come to the conclusion and so people can feel better about the whole situation,” said Charlie Venator, who lives nine houses down from the sinkhole. “They are also able to give their input and say what is on their mind.”

The meeting was led by Kevin Guthrie the Assistant County Administrator of Public Safety in Pasco County.

“The thought process of us coming here today was to ask based on this what if anything [can be done],” Guthrie said.

Guthrie presented three options:  Building a fence around the sinkhole with a cul de sac on each side, connecting the sinkhole to the lake while adding a cul de sac to each side of the lake or rebuilding the original road through the sinkhole.

“It is pretty obvious that since the county is responsible for the roads and the road is broken that the county would be responsible to fix the road,” said Venator. “That is, of all the options on the table, the most sensible to me.”

“What I would like to see happen is for them to work with the homeowners where the sinkhole is and repair that sinkhole,” said Brandi Geoit, who has a friend in the neighborhood.

Her request is only possible if those who lost their homes in the sinkhole choose to work with the county.

Guthrie says it is not the county’s responsibility to fix sinkholes located on private property.

The ideas and the input from the residents will be taken to the county commissioners for further consideration following the second meeting, which is scheduled for Wednesday, November 8, at 7 p.m. in the Land O’ Lakes Community Center.

The commissioners will also have to determine the exact costs associated with each option before they are able to make any final decisions.

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