Utility pole left behind irks homeowner

June 24, 1994|By TaNoah V. Sterling | TaNoah V. Sterling,Sun Staff Writer

When Phillip Reyes bought his home in the Orr Acres community 18 months ago, he figured that whoever owned the utility pole on his property would come and take it away.

He was wrong.

Mr. Reyes said the Polm Co., which developed Orr Acres, left the pole standing by his house, at Fort Smallwood and Whites Cove roads. Mr. Reyes also said the pole, once connected to a trailer that was on his property, is keeping him from building a fence around his house.

The pole looks like an ordinary telephone pole and has a metal cable hanging to the ground. It does not hold any telephone or electrical wires.

"It's an eyesore. It has no purpose," Mr. Reyes said. "It's like a big phallic symbol in the middle of my yard."

All the county can offer is sympathy.

"It's a civil matter between the homeowner and the contractor," said county building inspector Bill Bryant. "If I had a legal means of making him remove the pole, I would."

Initially, Mr. Reyes thought the telephone company owned the pole and assumed that someone would come to remove it.

When he decided to build an 8-foot-high wooden fence around his house to dampen the noise from cars racing down Fort bTC Smallwood Road, he found that the Polm Co. had left the pole. Mr. Reyes said he asked John Arigo, superintendent of Orr Acres, to remove the pole.

"He said, 'Sure, no problem.' Then they said they couldn't move it," Mr. Reyes said, adding that the company did not give him an explanation.

Mr. Reyes approached Mr. Arigo yesterday while he was driving through the community and told him a reporter wanted to talk to him about the pole.

Mr. Arigo cursed, said, "I ain't got time for her," then sped off in his truck, Mr. Reyes said.

A woman who answered the phone at the Polm Co. refused to comment, saying, "I can't answer any of your questions."

Mr. Reyes said he called county building inspectors and Del. W. Ray Huff, D-Pasadena, to get help. Mr. Bryant, the county building inspector, said he made a courtesy call asking the the company to remove the pole.

Mr. Huff said company officials told him that Mr. Reyes bought the property as is. The delegate said he may have to address the issue on legal grounds during the next legislative session.

"It seems to me that [the builders] should have the responsibility to clean up. I feel if you buy a house, it should be clean," Mr. Huff said.

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