GOLDEN GATE, Fla - A Call for Action investigation reveals a warning for homeowners in Golden Gate.
One man was left with an $11,000 water bill, but he says he hasn't turned his water on in four years!
Paul Basso purchased a duplex in 2008. It was supposed to be an investment a place he would fix up and eventually rent out. But, when new tenants moved in and tried to turn on the water, Basso was told the Florida Government Utility Authority put a lien on his property.
"This apartment has had no water for four years, not a single drop of water and I have to pay $11,000 for not a single drop of water coming in or out," says Basso.
WINK News looked into the matter and confirmed with Naples lawyer Brian Thanasiu that a 2009 resolution allows FGUA to charge you a fee whether you are using your water or not.
Basso says he never received any water bills in the mail over the last four years and is frustrated that more than half of what he owes is because of late fees.
Since WINK News started looking into the matter, FGUA has agreed to reduce Basso's late fees in half, but he still owes more than $7,000 on his two properties.
Thanasiu says based on Florida law FGUA has every right to charge customers in this way and there is virtually nothing Basso can do. Thanasiu says he's had clients with similar complaints against FGUA, but says the $11,000 bill that Basso has is the largest he's heard of.