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Residents express frustration, concern after fence is placed at Suni Sands Mobile Home Park

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Posted at 11:42 PM, Sep 20, 2016
and last updated 2016-09-21 05:48:19-04

Controversy continues at the Suni Sands Mobile Home Park in Jupiter - where the developer and residents are going head to head. 

That developer plans to build a $30 million dollar hotel on that property - but longtime residents say they are standing firm. 

Sean Kelley not only lives at Suni Sands. He was married there. 
 
“My wife and her friends came up on a little boat, and everybody was in their bare feet in the sand and mud,” he says. “We had a cute little wedding here.” 
 
Fast forward 6 years and the spot where he made these memories - just feet from his home - now blocked from view. 

A 6-foot tall fence installed last week is now separating the inlet from the mobile park.

It's the latest chapter in the ongoing dispute between residents and the property's developer.
 
“This is so offensive…it’s the end for us.”

Residents are fighting back against the plans for the hotel, taking the matter to court and trying to void the sale of the property. 
 
Earlier this year, the park was closed, eviction notices were handed out, but those involved in the litigation decided to stay to see things through as the case moved through.
 
Then just a few days ago, the fence was installed.  
 
“I think that this was put here just for spite,”  says resident Tom Ryan “They see money, that's all they care about.” 
 
Residents say their once beautiful view and access to the beach is gone, but it's not their only concern. 
 
“We've had to rescue boaters who have capsized, we've had to rescue somebody who was on the beach,” says resident Jan West. “If they were in distress…we would have no way of being able to reach them.”  
 
The park manager told NewsChannel 5 by phone the fence is is for safety and liability purposes. 
 
He also emphasized the park is closed, and has been for months, even though the developer has allowed the remaining residents to stay. 
 
For Kelley, however, it's less about the fence itself, and more about the symbol he says it represents for his family.  
 
“My wife grew up in a far away nation where oligarchs ran everything in their world. Two days ago, she looks out the window and says ‘I’m living under the same oligarch’.” 
 
Both sides are set to go back to court to discuss the suit against the developer next week.

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