Tampa Bay pool builder says Olympus Swimming pools is making progress on lots of of jobs; some prospects disagree
PASCO COUNTY, Florida – In April, investigator Jackie Callaway first revealed hundreds of Olympus Pools customers who were frustrated with unfinished projects. The owner of the company promised to catch up on the work, but the data shows that progress is slow.
Doug and Cristina Mooney retired Olympus Pools in July 2020. In April the pool wasn’t ready. At this point, I-Team investigator Jackie Callaway was pushing the company for answers as to why they continued to contract for new pool projects even after the Lutz couple and hundreds of others had stalled their project.
Olympus Pools owner James Staten promised to stop selling pools and focus on completing existing projects. A statement that he confirmed again in May.
Last week the Mooney’s pool was unfinished and unfilled.
Less than a mile away, Jackie Kalnins’ back yard looks like it did in photos she posted to ABC Action News in April. The Kalnins say no one from Olympus Pools has answered their calls for months. You signed with the client in May 2020.
How much progress has the company made in the past three months?
The I-Team pulled the permit data from Pasco County. As promised, Olympus Pools stopped selling pools at the beginning of the year. And the numbers show that between 2019-2020, the company pulled in 540 permits and completed 118. Of these, 21 jobs were completed in the last three months.
Two hours before a scheduled interview with Staten at the Mooneys home, three trucks with crews and equipment arrived to work by the pool.
Staten said he prioritizes work and completes the oldest project first, but not every project would have employees in every location.
“The workers are in dozens of locations. There won’t be workers on the construction sites every day, ”he said. “That won’t happen. I don’t want to pretend this is happening.”
On June 2, Jordan Hidalgo, a pool consultant and owner of Pools by Jordan, took over the day-to-day running of Olympus Pools to do hundreds of unfinished jobs. Staten calls progress slow but steady. “We hope to have everyone ready by Christmas.”
The company says it has poured 40 foundations and completed 30 jobs in the past few months, despite the historic shortage of manpower and supplies, as well as weeks of rainy weather. And ABC Action News confirmed that they have settled a million dollar lawsuit with the largest pool utility in the country.
But the pool builder’s legal problems remain. The Attorney General’s Office confirms it is actively looking into 150 customer complaints. And the Sheriff’s offices in Hillsborough and Polk Counties continue to investigate homeowner fraud allegations.
Staten was also asked about the Kalnin’s pool. Staten met with Jackie Kalnin later that day and work on her project has since resumed.
ABC Action News will continue to push for progress for every Olympus Pool customer who contacted us. If you are one of them, you can file a complaint with government regulators at www.myfloridalicense.com.