Florida military veteran fights to keep flag flying in front yard

U.S. Marine veteran is cited for permit violation

Published  9:30 AM HST Mar 29, 2013
HYPOLUXO, Fla. -

When Gregory Schaffer, a U.S. Marine Veteran, installed a flagpole in his front yard so he could proudly fly old glory, he didn't think it would be a problem.

But he was soon slapped with a permit violation after someone called the town of Hypoluxo and filed a formal complaint.

Schaffer said he thought it was a joke.

"It's sad that a neighbor would complain about this," Schaffer said.

It turns out Schaffer needs a permit for the flagpole.

But since he rents the home and the owner lives out of the country, Schaffer needs to have a third-party contractor to apply for the permit.

Schaffer said that could cost him anywhere from $600 to $1,000.

The permit requires the the flagpole design be signed and sealed by an engineer to withstand 150 mph since he lives in a hurricane zone.

It also has to be re-installed or replaced to meet engineer specifications and reinspected.

Schaffer said once he applies for the permit he will be subject to four times the original fine.

He has 30 days to fix the problem.

Tim Large, the building official for the town, said he is willing to work with Schaffer "to get the issue straightened out."

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