MANATEE COUNTY – Holmes Beach city leaders have won a judgment in their favor in the long-debated case of a two-story beachfront tree house constructed at the Angelinos Sea Lodge.
Now, Mayor Judy Titsworth says the city can seek an order to have the structure removed.
The written order was handed down from the Manatee County Circuit Court late Jan. 20, with Judge Edward Nicholas ruling in favor of the city on four counts.
Tree house and Angelinos Sea Lodge owners Lynn Tran and Richard Hazen alleged that the city leaders violated their due process rights under the Florida constitution when the city refused to issue after-the-fact building permits for the structure. Nicholas ruled that the city’s leaders and representatives did not violate the tree house owners’ rights. Hazen and Tran are set to meet in a Feb. 3 case management hearing with representatives from the Florida Department of Environmental Protection in front of Judge Charles Sniffen to discuss any potential settlement negotiations in another case concerning the refusal to issue after-the-fact building permits for the tree house. That case was previously set to go to trial later this year.