Spa issue rankles resident
A BELMONT pensioner says his tenancy is in jeopardy after the Housing Authority identified a spa and shelter he had installed nearly 20 years ago was non-compliant.
Eric Reed has lived at his Bellis Place property since 1990 and had the spa installed in 1999 as a therapeutic aid for his now deceased daughter, who had spina bifida.
At the time, he also had a lean-to shelter built over the spa, which Housing Authority has also requested comply with local regulations within six weeks.
Mr Reed was a single parent and carer for his daughter until she died in 2008.
He said at 73 years old, he had neither the money nor the capacity to comply with the Housing Authority’s request to review the permissions granted in 1999.
“Many years ago there was none of these new rules and all of a sudden, 20 years later, there’s some new kid on the block giving me harassment,” he said.
“The spa is safely enclosed by the cover and walls and does not destroy the structural integrity of the house.”
To keep the spa, Mr Reed said he needed to seek permits and have his property surveyed so it complied with modern legislation for pools or spas above 300mm.
“When I wanted a spa for my youngster with spina bifida, I had to then listen to the people that installed the spa and they put an application in for a permit,” he said.
“There’s been that many deaths with pools around the state it’s not funny, but I complied with my own common sense and the people who installed it all those years ago.
“I never thought 20-odd years ago, when I installed the spa for my daughter, that I’d be going through this.”
Housing Authority said an inspection in June last year found the structure around the spa had been built without their approval or City of Belmont approval.
Inspectors visited Mr Reed’s property on February 16 and again on February 22 telling him to comply, then sent him a letter on February 25 advising he had six weeks to comply with the direction to remove the non-compliant structure or apply for correct permits.
Housing Authority service delivery manager Greg Cash said the modifications were clearly not compliant and could not remain as they were.
“The Housing Authority is not exempt from any national, state or local government building codes, nor does it seek exemptions for individual cases,” he said.
Eric Reed has been told his spa and shelter are non-compliant by the Housing Authority.