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Author Topic: DN - Town Council to meet with attorney regarding junkyard  (Read 900 times)
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« on: October 19, 2007, 12:04:04 PM »

from the Derry News

Town Council to meet with attorney regarding junkyard

Terry Date
Published: October 18, 2007 04:26 pm

LONDONDERRY -- The Town Council will seek advice from the town's lawyer before deciding whether to investigate zoning decisions related to Murray's junkyard.

Councilor Brian Farmer proposed Monday that the council investigate decisions by the Zoning and Planning boards that relate to the junkyard, where owner Ed Dudek is building an enclosure to drain engine fluids and prevent them from spilling into the ground. That procedure that now takes place in the open air.

Dudek received a variance from the Zoning Board to build the enclosure in a conservation overlay district. Last week, the Planning Board approved the enclosure. In addition, last spring the council issued the annual permit to operate the business.

Throughout the lengthy process, the town's boards have sought counsel from the town's attorney.

Farmer said an investigation could be a long, drawn-out matter. Councilor Mark Oswald suggested that the council hold off on any investigation until after the panel meets privately with the town's attorney.

Council Chairman Joe Paradis expects that meeting to take place next month, at which time he'll ask the attorney what has guided his recommendations, including those related to trucks parked at the business and its hours of operation.

Abutter Richard Bielinski has questioned the legal advice issued thus far, saying some of it runs counter to state law.

He has also accused the town code enforcement officer of failing to enforce local rules.

Town Manager Dave Caron has called the criticism inaccurate and unfair.

Paradis told the abutters on Monday that he is convinced that they are motivated by a desire to see Dudek stop operations on Hall Road. The abutters say this is not the case.

Paradis said if he is satisfied with the answers from the lawyer he will not likely support an investigation.

Farmer's proposal took place during the public comment portion of the meeting, during which junkyard abutter Gerard Adams said the council had not been responsive to his complaints and that his only recourse was to move his complaints to another venue.

Adams did not indicate where he would seek redress.

Adams and Bielinski have repeatedly complained to town councilors about the business, including complaints about its hours of operation and the owner's paving of the driveway without a permit.

Bielinski says the junkyard enclosure does not represent a conforming use and therefore should not be grandfathered.

Farmer estimated that the council has spent about 40 hours listening to the abutters concerns this year.

The council spent about two hours listening to and discussing the abutters' concerns on Monday.

Glenn Douglas
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