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OPA Board wants action on properties

8/7/14 | By Nancy Powell, Staff Writer/Ocean City Today

OCEAN PINES - Owners of several Ocean Pines properties are in continuous violation of required maintenance of them, the Ocean Pines board of directors decided July 29.

In a unanimous vote, the board authorized attorney Joe Moore to continue action, including filing suit, on owners of nine properties until a resolution is reached.

The nine properties are 14 Capetown Road, 61 Moonraker Road, 12 Brookton Lane, 58 Nottingham Lane, 8 Willow Way, 37 and 52 Battersea Road and 70 and 74 Crest Haven Drive.

In the case of the Capetown Road property, there is already an injunction that calls for the owner to remove a box trailer on it. Moore said he will ask the court to find the man in contempt of that injunction and order him to remove it or the OPA will remove it and bill him for services rendered.

An additional four properties were also found to be in continuous violation, but in those cases, the board authorized General Manager Bob Thompson to take appropriate action that could include having OPA staff perform maintenance. The property owners would be billed for the work.

Those four properties are 52 Capetown Road, 73 and 255 Windjammer Road and 74 Crest Haven Drive, which reportedly has junk in the yard and a metal chain link fence.

“I’m pretty sure you could walk away with the house and nobody would be mad,” Director Marty Clarke said. “It’s been vacant three years.”

Clarke added that the owner of the 73 Windjammer property had been working on it.

In the case of 32 Battersea Road, where covered junk vehicles have been in the driveway for a number of years, Moore said he would file a court complaint for an injunction to have the vehicles removed.

As for defining what a junk vehicle is, Moore said, “You know it when you see it.”

In the cases of 8 and 11 Juneway, the board decided those properties should be “fast-tracked,” and in the case of 7 Gatehouse, they authorized Moore to proceed with filing suit.

That property, which has a burned-out house on it, had been in foreclosure and there had been no one to notify about the violation. That issue was resolved, Moore said, when the lending institution bought it and took title to it.

Moore’s colleague, Chris Woodley, wrote a letter to that institution in June to say that after a fire, the property must be cleared within 60 days.

“We have an injunction ready to go,” Moore said. “They have the right to show cause why they don’t have to remove the building. It’s an abomination.”

The burned-out house is not readily apparent from driving by it. OPA President Tom Terry said he got a telephone call in reference to it about two months ago.

“That’s how we found out about it,” Terry said.

Director Sharyn O’Hare said the house had burned down two years ago, but they had not known about it.

Several years ago, each board member was responsible for knowing what was going on in certain territories of the community and they would drive or walk around their territory to check on it. That is no longer done. 

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