FORT MYERS, Fla.- Every day, Milos Filar hops on his mower, starts it up and gets to work. He's a service worker for code enforcement, and the only guy they have to mow overgrown lots.
"Usually, I mow nine, ten properties a day," he said.
Code Enforcement Supervisor Rick Scott says Filar does a great job, but they simply don't have the manpower to keep up with the cases coming in. In fact, he has a stack of about 1,000 properties waiting their attention; that includes everything from unsafe buildings to overgrown foliage.
"We have a lot of people just call us and say, 'Can you mow my lawn?'" Scott said, "because we've mowed it before, because it was in violation. They don't want to do it, because it's less expensive for us to do it than for them to hire a lawn service," he explained.
Scott says it might help to increase fines for repeat offenders, but what they really need is another worker. Filar is so thirsty for help, he asked me to ditch the camera and hop on a lawn mower.
"if you come in tomorrow," he said, "I'll put you on (a lawn mower). I have another one there," he jokingly said as he pointed to another mower.
Aside from the need for extra help, bees, snakes and the sweltering heat makes it dangerous for Filar to do all the work on his own. The bottom line, though, is that it would cost $60,000 to hire someone for code enforcement, and that money just isn't in the budget.