TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) – Olympus Pools owner James Staten insists his company will survive and that he will finish the hundreds of pools he’s started in seven Tampa Bay area counties.
It’s been more than three months since a Better Call Behnken investigation uncovered the ordeal playing out in backyards around the area. It’s been more than five weeks since Staten announced he had partnered with a competitor to finish the pools.
“I’m pleased with the progress,” Staten said Thursday. “I think we’re making great strides. It was never going to be overnight, but I’m pleased with the steps we’ve taken and the direction we’re going.”
Staten says the company has finished about 100 pools since he partnered with Jordan Hildalgo. He admits the pair have hundreds more pools to complete.
However, customers tell Better Call Behnken they are still frustrated and angry. Some report some progress – some more than others – but there still complaint of a lack of communication and stalled projects.
“I saw a lot of people online and they were like, ‘…don’t trust this guy, don’t trust this guy,’ and I was like, ‘Come on people, let’s give him an opportunity,'” one customer said. “But now we’re like 10 weeks, 12 weeks later, and it’s still the same thing.”
Staten says he had to drastically cut staff, but he has a core group still answering phones, scheduling projects and working late nights. He’s still asking for patience but, again, he says he expects all pools to be complete by the end of the year.
As for Hildalgo, he was unavailable to join the interview.
Meanwhile, law enforcement investigations continue.