City threatens to turn off running water at West Palm
14 August 2015
Earlier this month, the city of West Palm Beach sent a letter to
Woodstock condominium owners, stating the community's Homeowner's
Association needs to pay the community's water bill, which is long past
due. The bill is nearly $62,000.
If the bill isn't paid, condo dwellers could lose water by the end of
The 108-unit complex has two main water lines on the property but no
individual water meters.
Mildred Madison has lived in the Woodstock condominiums for 18 years.
She said she pays her water bill to the HOA but is wondering where the
"My biggest fear is I don't want to lose my property," Madison said.
"We have to pay $230 every month. I pay my $230."
Sarah Hudson said she owns two condos in the complex. She said the
reason why the water bills are so high is because the infrastructure is
"There's double water usage for every month," Hudson said.
City spokesman Elliot Cohen said they've been dealing with the problem
at Woodstock for years. He said the city will have to take swift action
by next month.
"We obviously don't want to shut anybody's water off, but with over
$60,000 worth of outstanding water bills due from the association,
we're left with very little choice," Cohen said.
Cohen said if the water is bill is not paid, the city will turn the
water off Sept. 25.
The HOA president Zandra Stevens said the issue began last year when
they had several major underground water breaks.
"The city refused to give us any credit on those water breaks. We are
paying the water bill, but the point is we can't pay the delinquency
that occurred when the water breaks happened," Stevens said.
Stevens also said that only about 60 percent of the condo owner are
paying their monthly HOA fees.
Condo owners said they have a dysfunctional HOA board, and there
haven't been meetings for years.
Gena Peterson moved in eight months ago and is already thinking about
moving her family.
"I mean, we can't stay here without water," Peterson said. "I spoke to
the owner and he said he's been paying his dues every month."
Condo owner Kenya Madison said there has to be a better way to deal
with the problem.
"I propose that we have individual meters, because that way, we're
responsible for our own water," Kenya Madison said.