Pastor Gary Reckart says the church has waited nearly two years for Hillsborough County to step up to the plate and pay for the damages which he alleges were caused by improper design and construction of new retention ponds. He also said the County is liable because of years of adding increased storm water into the Ponds behind University Mall causing the two 48 inch outfall RCPs to fail. The church trustees claim a new control weir and the berm of a new pond is at an elevation that can cause flooding of over seventy five percent of its property. They believe this is a taking and they are protected by eminent domain laws.
The County has offered the congregation the parcel value of $140,000 to get off the land and give it the church building and the accessory buildings appraised recently for $846,375.00.
The church trustees have rejected the offer saying it cannot relocate in its community with that little money and continue its homeless ministry and helping the poor. They say the County is liable for its loss of value and is now seeking legal counsel for possible inverse condemnation litigation. The church believes the County is totally liable for its $706,375.00 loss and has given it until May 1st to come to the table.
Pastor Gary Reckart can be reached at 813-449-2300