Day care damaged in Hurricane Irma paid thousands for roofing work that has not started

BBB has received multiple complaints about Jacksonville-based company

By Tarik Minor - Anchor, I-TEAM reporter, Jodi Mohrmann - Managing Editor of special projects, Eric Wallace - Senior Producer, I-TEAM

ORANGE PARK, Fla. - An Orange Park kindergarten and day care center, damaged by Hurricane Irma, has found out it’s not the only customer claiming to have been ripped off by a Jacksonville-based roofing company that does business across the state.

The Better Business Bureau has received multiple complaints about Carlson Enterprises, LLC.  The director of that Orange Park day care center accused the roofing company’s owner, Adolph Carlson, of taking thousands of dollars in deposit money, and never starting the job.

Patricia Tauch, of Orange Park Kindergarten, says her business received a disaster loan following Irma, to fix the center’s roof.  She paid that money to Carlson Enterprises.

She paid “$16,132 on Nov. 9, and I haven’t heard from them since,” said Tauch.

Tauch said Carlson Enterprises first promised to start the work on Dec. 15, but eventually company employees stopped returning her calls.

“And then I find out they never even pulled a permit to fix my roof, all of these start dates they couldn’t have if they wanted to,” Tauch said.  “So they had no intention of fixing my roof, none at all.”

When the I-TEAM visited the offices of Carlson Enterprises, the building was locked up and appeared empty.  At Carlson’s home in Jacksonville Beach, there was no answer at the door.

News4Jax reviewed company registrations filed with the state of Florida, and found Carlson started another business late last month, under the name Kingfish Construction LLC.  That worried Tauch.

“He’s taking my money and he’s gone somewhere else, he’s going to do this to other people,” she said.

Duval County court records show that American Express is currently suing Carlson Enterprises for breach of contract, claiming the business defaulted on the terms of its account, and owes $104,845.71.  A separate lawsuit filed by a supplier in 2016 alleges that Carlson Enterprises owes more than $13,000 for goods and materials provided to the roofing company.

Tauch, the day care director worries that she may never get her $16,000 back so she can get her roof fixed.

“You hope when people tell you they are going to do something, that they do it,” Tauch said.  “This is our business, this is our livelihood.  We have 100 kids we care for, 15 employees here, they need a safe place to be, we need a place to work.”

In addition to the Jacksonville office, Carlson Enterprises has offices in Orlando, Tampa, Gainesville, and Daytona Beach.  The I-TEAM called those offices, as well as Carlson’s home and cellphone numbers, with no response.  The Better Business Bureau reported in an alert to consumers, that as of March 7, the phone numbers for the offices outside of Jacksonville had been disconnected.

The office of Florida’s attorney general, Pam Bondi, told the I-TEAM that it is reviewing incoming consumer complaints regarding Carlson Enterprises, LLC, and reaching out to consumers for more information.  The office is also forwarding consumer complaints to the Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation, the agency which licenses contractors in the state.  That agency told News4Jax that there were no public complaints against the roofing company, but added that it cannot confirm or deny the existence of any complaints or investigations against licensed professionals until 10 days after probable cause has been found.

The I-TEAM welcomes the chance to tell Carlson Enterprises’ side in this issue.

If you have a complaint against Carlson Enterprises, LLC, you can file complaints with the following organizations & agencies:

Copyright 2018 by WJXT News4Jax - All rights reserved.