JENSEN BEACH, Fla. — High school students looking to attend a non-district sponsored prom in Martin County now need to get a notarized waiver to attend the event this Sunday at the Mansion at Tuckahoe.
The venue is a county-managed property located in Jensen Beach.
South Fork High School senior Eduardo Diaz said it is just the latest obstacle he has faced while organizing the prom.
He has spent more than a month planning the event, securing the venue, a disc jockey and a caterer, all while implementing COVID-19 safety precautions.
"Forty-five volunteers, 10 to 15 sheriff deputies and fencing apparently for the entire perimeter," Diaz described.
He said he was told by the county in just the last couple of weeks that while attendees had already signed waivers, they now all needed to obtain notarized waivers.
Diaz said he hopes this is the last item in a long list of challenges.
"First it was the students giving us a lot of whiplash about the whole thing, parents coming after us, teachers slandering me in class," Diaz said.
Diaz also said people called his original vendors and pressured them to cancel.
"Then it was the event permit and now the notaries two weeks before the event is being held," Diaz said. "It’s obstacle after obstacle. We don't have time to lose trying to fight it."
There are more than 400 students who have signed up to attend. Diaz said he has only received notarized waivers from about half of the students and needs the waivers by Thursday.
At Tuesday's Martin County Commission meeting, one member of the public brought up the concern about the notarized waivers.
"Why weren't they told upfront that waivers would have to be signed," the resident said.
Diaz said there was no mention in their contract of notarized waivers.
"Those have been in place for a couple of weeks now. ... Once we knew they were selling tickets and there was going to be a large number of individuals, that’s when it rose to the level of an event, and the waivers were then implemented," County Administrator Taryn Kryzda said.
State Rep. Toby Overdorf, R-Palm City, is helping students get their waivers notarized.
Overdorf is welcoming students to stop by his office at 151 SW Flagler Ave. in Stuart from 3 p.m. to 7 p.m. Thursday. People will be there to notarize the waivers.