Flagler County Sheriff’s Office Dealing with Mold Again

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PALM COAST, Fla. — II’s happening all over again. The Flagler County Sheriff’s Office is dealing with mold in yet another building.

  • Flagler Sheriff’s Office dealing with mold in recently-bought building
  • Plans to use space as temporary Palm Coast district office derailed
  • Realtor said she had no knowledge of the mold, water damage
  • More Flagler County headlines

This time, mold was found in the old Sears building in Palm Coast that the county bought in late March for $1.1 million.

Officials had planned to use as a temporary space for the Palm Coast district office, but after the county found mold and water damage inside, it derailed those plans.

“The county discovered significant mold and structural issues with it. Fortunately they found that before they did any real remodeling,” said Sheriff Rick Staly.

Now, Flagler County is pursuing claims against the engineer they hired to inspect the building, the previous owners of the building who they say hid these issues, and the realtor, who coincidentally brokered the deal for their operations center, which the Sheriff’s Office also abandoned due to mold.

“I thought we had a new building, or basically a new building. It certainly looks pretty, but it’s a piece of junk,” Staly said when talking about the agency’s operations building.

Spectrum News 13 reached out to all the parties involved and only heard back from the realtor, Margaret Sheehan-Jones, who provided the following statement:

“When I visited the property with several representatives of the County prior to the sale of the Sears store, the store was still operating and the space was full of inventory,” said Sheehan-Jones. “I had no knowledge of any issues with water intrusion at the property, and the seller did not disclose anything to me that would have raised any concerns.

She also said in her statement:

” … It is unreasonable to suggest I had a duty to disclose facts that I did not know about or had any way to discover. The County has staff with construction experience and hired an independent inspector to determine the condition of the property, which is standard practice in commercial real estate transactions. Neither the County staff nor the independent inspector found anything that was cause for concern at the time. The information that has been released shows that the County had to remove walls from the building to discover the issue … “

As for the Sheriff and the rest of his office, they are stuck sharing space on three floors of the courthouse until the new operations and district office buildings are completed in an estimated two years.

The Sheriff hopes steps are taken to give them some more space soon.

 “We can’t operate like this for two more years while the building is being built,” Staly said.

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