SUNSET BEACH, NC (WECT) – Frustration among property owners in Jaguar's Lair is mounting. Many people are upset because they say they're paying money for facilities they can't use.
Monte Simpson bought property in Jaguar's Lair in 2006 with the intention to build a retirement home. Seven years later, he's still waiting for more development of the area before building his home. Simpson says he was promised facilities like a golf course, tennis courts, and community buildings when he initially bought the property. Years after the purchase, much of the land remains undeveloped and council members continue to try to decide how to handle things with developer Mark Saunders.
Simpson says he's paying maintenance fees for facilities that have not yet been built.
"If I were in the building industry, I'd be insulted by having this pace of work classified as a best effort which is what the agreements called for," said Simpson. "It's hardly the standard in terms of pace."
Construction work is underway and the developer is currently on schedule to complete phase one of the project within the next 90 days. But now, Sunset Beach leaders are considering granting more time for the developer to finish phase two.
"It's too long. It shouldn't take that long," said Simpson. "You shouldn't need that much time and I see it as more of a stalling tactic than any genuine effort to help people get what he sold them."
A representative from the development company says that building permits are available for more than 100 home sites in the area. However, Simpson says he doesn't want to start building until the developer finishes his job first.
"10 years have gone by. That's 10 years he can never deliver to me," said Simpson. "That value proposition is gone. He could come in here tomorrow and gold plate the roads but that can't pay me back."
Sunset Beach leaders are expected to vote on whether or not to grant more time to the developer to complete phase two of the project during a special meeting on Wednesday.
We reached out to the developer and asked why the project is taking so long to complete. A spokesperson for the development company said "We are in complete compliance with every infrastructure completion target date agreed upon between the Town of Sunset Beach and the Ocean Ridge Developer."
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