TRI In The News
'Off the Grid' Homeowner Wants to Settle With Cape Officials
CAPE CORAL, FL -
Cape Coral's "off the grid" resident is gearing up to take the city to court. Today we learned Robin Speronis filed an appeal challenging the city's push to get her to "plug in."
"The city has been forcing our hands," Speronis said.
Cape Coral's now infamous "off the grid" resident says she's preparing for a battle she never intended to get into.
"My property should have never been condemned for not having electricity and not having city water," she said.
A month ago, a special magistrate ruled Speronis could use solar panels, and was in compliance with code because she was hooked up to the city sewer line.
"Ignoring the law, ignoring due process, they said we'll fix that and they cap the sewer," Speronis said.
The city says because Speronis was hooked up without paying they cut the service. Speronis was also found guilty of not being hooked up to city water.
That's what she'll now be challenging in court.
"We haven't been escalating it, the city has been escalating it," she added.
She says proof of that exists when the city filed a nuisance complaint with the Department of Health, claiming with her sewer capped she was spreading human waste in her yard.
Officials say they found nothing.
"I think Robin Speronis and all the people we help are real heroes," said the Rutherford Institute President John Whitehead.
Speronis has recently gained support from The Rutherford Institute, a non profit, civil liberties organization, who are now paying for her legal fees.
"I'm a very strong freedom advocate, freedom to live as you see fit as long as you're not harming somebody, then why should anybody care?" Whitehead said.
Speronis says she's willing to seek a compromise, and that justice doesn't mean someone has to lose, but if someone does, it won't be her.
Tomorrow morning Speronis will go before a judge to ask the city to stop further legal action while this appeal goes through.
"I'm not here to make trouble, I'm here to make something beautiful," she said.