Speech – Florida Construction Industry Licensing Board
On August 13, 2013 thekbhome.com received an anonymous tip about a meeting at the Sarasota Ritz Carlton. The meeting was to be held by the Florida Construction Industry Licensing Board on August 14, 2013 and there were going to be a few KB Home folks present.
We decided to attend the meeting to share our feelings about the happenings in Florida and abroad with KB Home. We verified if the meeting allowed for public comments and we were strongly advised not to speak by folks on the licensing board because it could impact our existing cases against KB Home. These facts did not concern us since the residents who already filed cases against KB Home had already reached out to thekbhome.com to let us know that the DBPR dismissed all of our claims and said no probable cause was found. Further, if any future punishments were to be issued by that board for something like a breach of contract, the potential breach of contract would be between KB Home and the Willowbrook Condominium Association and not us individual homeowners.
After sharing that we had no concern, the board asked us to go into the hall and yet another representative advised us not to speak. We were then told that if the board heard information about any case it could cause a conflict if punishments had to be issued in the future and allowing these guys on would hold them accountable if they did something wrong. We were then told that the governor might have to appoint a new board in the future because of our statements and that it had only happened once in the past.
Andy Smith again reiterated that the folks in that room already dismissed our cases and the agreement made was with KB Home and the Willowbrook HOA and not himself. He expressed his concern to help others and let the licensing board that he had no problems with them losing their appointment since they didn’t protect the residents of Florida and he had no proof that they even listened to the homeowners claims since the records were sealed.
Shortly after, Mr. Smith walked back into the conference room and was sworn in. During which time the DBPR representative in the hallway asked one of the other Willowbrook residents if Mr. Smith was serious and that resident replied yes. A few moments later Mr. Smith watched several concerned DBPR members huddle in the corner to discuss what was happening and the KB Home attorney was promptly notified. A moment later the DBPR representative explained that the licensing board was reaching out to the Florida Attorney General to see if it was OK for us to proceed with speaking and that KB Homes licensing approvals would be pushed back until they received the go ahead for Andy Smith to speak.
While we were waiting for feedback, George Glance (Regional President KB Home Orlando) came walking into the room and sat down behind us Mr. Smith. Mr. Glance, several other KB Homes employees and their legal counsel started talking. A few minutes later we were called into the hall and Mr. Smith provided his contact information and further expressed his intentions.
KB Home’s attorney was also pulled into the hallway and informed on the decision to allow Mr. Smith to speak.
The room was soon informed that a resident would be given the opportunity to speak and the DBPR stated that they didn’t feel that we would be targeting the individuals in the room and proceeded to allow Andy Smith to speak. KB Home’s attorney objected to allowing us to speak but that objection was overruled, allowing Mr. Smith to share his concerns over the shoddy construction and homeowners hurt by KB Home throughout the state and across the county. Mr. Smith stated that he felt that further licensing should not be issued since there were so many outstanding issues to address.
After Mr. Smith presented his speech, two members of the board expressed their disgust over the situation with KB Home and the use of licensed qualifiers and the lack of accountability and the licenses were issued, but made it clear that they were not specifically talking about KB Home.
KB Home and their entire team quickly left the room and we followed. George Glance took off quickly down the hall to put as much distance as possible between thekbhome.com team and himself and the lawyers and some of the other KB Home employees sat outside the door talking. A few moments later, the two gentleman from the DBPR that originally discouraged Mr. Smith left the meeting to come out and thank him for his professionalism and how he handled the matter. At that point some of the folks from KB Home apparently looked around the corner to see what was going on and the crew from thekbhome.com left.
Mr. Smith wanted to take a moment to thank the Construction Industry Licensing Board and the Attorney General for allowing him the opportunity to speak on behalf of KB homeowners everywhere. We were told that this was the first time that a homeowner had come to address their concerns at one of these meetings.
The meeting minutes will eventually be available at the below url:
We highly recommend more homeowners visit these meetings to express their concerns about KB Home.