TEQUESTA (CBSMiami) – A Florida woman claims her condo association is threatening her with daily fines if she keeps letting a longtime family friend displaced by Hurricane Dorian stay with her.
Donell Pubien’s home in Abaco is still standing, but just barely. It has gaping holes and warped walls.
“Rocks would fly through and sound like shotgun bullets. The hurricane was devastating,” Pubien said.
He and his family have been close friends with Teena Lavalvo for about 10 years.
They would come to visit her often over the years.
Lavalvo helped arrange for a private plane to take them off the island.
The rest of his family went to stay at his sister’s house but there wasn’t enough room for him, so he came to Lavalvo’s home.
Other displaced Bahamians stayed at her house, too. She says the highest total was seven and that was for one night.
Now, she says Pubien is the only one staying with her.
Lavalvo was welcoming, but says her condo association wasn’t.
“She indicated that she had been informed that I had brought in displaced families to my home and that it was against the guidelines of our association,” Lavalvo said.
Just days after that conversation, Lavalvo got a letter from her association’s management company.
It stated the home is for a single family and that she’s not allowed to rent any rooms out.
She said she’s providing temporary housing for free.
“I do not understand how this association, or any other community wouldn’t be… have empathy for the fact that we were going through a very short period of transition,” Lavalvo said.
Starting next week, Lavalvo could be fined $100 each day if she doesn’t find other arrangements for Pubien.
“Out of everything, you’re always going to find spiteful people and people that just don’t care about other people. But you’ll always find good people wherever you go,” Pubien said.
Messages asking for a response have been left with the association president and the woman who signed the letter threatening fines.