Sympathetic supervisors deny disabled vet’s non-compliant driveway pavers

A disabled Vietnam veteran was sent back to the drawing board by Community Development District 4 supervisors Friday over pavers he put down in his yard to create a smooth surface for parking his golf cart.

Disabled Vietnam veteran Tim Hite went before Community Development District 4 supervisors on Friday to argue his need for pavers he’s put down outside his home in the Soulliere Villas.

Tim Hite, who lives at 7390 SE 167th Zina Lane in the Soulliere Villas, has been disabled since being wounded in Vietnam in 1969. He said he had the pavers installed to extend his courtyard driveway, claiming that his hip injury requires him to use a smooth surface while getting in and out of his vehicles. And he told supervisors that he can’t fit his golf cart, vehicle and other items, like a refrigerator and tool box, in his garage at one time and still easily enter his house.

Prior to the installing the pavers, Hite had submitted a request to the Architectural Review Committee. But after discussing the ARC’s purview and the prohibition regarding courtyard villas, Hite withdrew his ARC application with the understanding that he would have a hearing in front of CDD 4 supervisors, according to Community Standards Manager Candice Dennis.

Hite’s request fell under the Fair Housing Act, which meant supervisors had to remain very focused with their ruling. District Manager Richard Baier and District Counsel Valerie Fuchs both cautioned supervisors that they could only consider Hite’s request for an accommodation involving the need for the pavers, not whether it’s inconvenient to shift vehicles around to get in and out of his garage and driveway.

Hite told supervisors that not having the pavers will put an unnecessary strain on him when entering and exiting his vehicles.

“My right leg does not bend due to my injuries, causing me to pull or push myself up on the seat,” the former Army sergeant said. “Doing this on anything other than a smooth surface could cause me to have a slip or fall.”

After asking several questions, supervisors voted to deny Hite’s request while allowing him time to resubmit his application with more information that could help them make a favorable decision.

After the meeting, Hite suggested that supervisors should visit his home and see exactly what he’s talking about. He said not being able to fit his golf cart in his garage and exit the vehicle safely remains a concern. And he vowed to put together more information and come back before CDD 4 supervisors at a later date.

Villager Kevin McCabe, a Vietnam Purple Heart recipient, is also fighting to keep driveway extensions at his home.