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The Villages
Thursday, September 21, 2023

Villagers with little white cross not hopeful heading into mediation session

A couple with a little white cross in their yard are not hopeful a mediation session will bring a resolution to their fight to keep their cross at their home in The Villages.

Wayne Anderson of the Village of Tamarind Grove said the mediation session slated for 10 a.m. Tuesday, May 30 with his attorney and an attorney for Community Development District 8 is expected to last about four hours.

This little white cross is on display at the home of Wayne Anderson in the Village of Tamarind Grove.

It’s not clear what either side could offer to end the stalemate. CDD 8 maintains the little white cross is a lawn ornament and therefore its placement in the Andersons’ front yard is a violation of the deed restriction. Wayne Anderson and his wife Bonnie insist they will not remove their religious symbol. The two positions don’t appear to offer much room for compromise. A trial date has been set for Aug. 14.

Earlier this month, CDD 8 supervisors huddled in secret with their attorney to discuss possible legal strategies.

The case dates back to 2019 when Wayne Anderson appeared before the CDD 8 board questioning why he had been singled out, when many of his neighbors also had little white crosses and were not ordered to remove their crosses. The Andersons were targeted by an anonymous complaint and contend they are the victims of “selective enforcement.”

The Andersons are facing thousands of dollars in deed compliance fines and CDD 8 has consistently remained mum on the legal tab it has accumulated in its war with the Andersons.

Since the Andersons’ case began, the anonymous complaint policy has been under siege. Community Development Districts 2 and 5 are no longer accepting anonymous complaints.

Do you think it’s time for surrender in the little white cross battle? Share your thoughts in a Letter to the Editor at letters@villages-news.com

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