County officials will hold a hearing on proposed changes to the junk car ordinance
By Matt Shaw
Published in News on December 20, 2004 1:57 PM
Wayne County officials plan to start fining people who refuse to clean up junked cars. Fines would be $100 for first-time offenders, $300 for repeat offenders.
The county commissioners have scheduled a public hearing Tuesday on proposed changes to the junked-car ordinance.
The county passed its junked-car rules in July 2002 and started enforcing them the following January. During 2003, the county's enforcement officer, Joe Allen of the Sheriff's Office, responded to complaints about 2,000 abandoned, junked and nuisance motor vehicles. Around 200 were towed away and sold.
But since then, people with junkers have found ways to avoid getting rid of them.
They've put tarps over long lines of vehicles, which requires Allen to keep checking to see if the covers are in place. If not, he has to track down the owners and ask them to fix them.
Also, the county has had trouble getting tow truck companies to haul away the junkers because the vehicles sell for so little.
The commissioners are considering the fines both to encourage compliance and to generate revenues to pay for towing.
The proposed fines are for $100 for first offenses, $200 for second offenses and $300 for any subsequent violations of the ordinance. Each day would be considered a separate offense.
The county is also planning to require all car covers be ones specifically manufactured for vehicles, instead of tarps. Property owners would only be allowed one covered vehicle.
The public hearing is set for 9:15 a.m. Tuesday in the commissioners' chambers, 4th floor, Wayne County Courthouse Annex, S. William St.
Also, a hearing will be held on Denize Odeh's rezoning request for property at the intersection of Collier Street and U.S. 117, across from the Belfast Fire Station
If the commissioner grant the rezoning -- from agricultural use to village district -- the 2.3-acre tract would reportedly be developed as a convenience store.
No opposition has been reported yet to the plans, and the county's Planning Board has recommended the rezoning.
The hearing is scheduled for 9:15 a.m.
The board of trustees for the Wayne County Memorial Community Building has asked the commissioners to waive landfill fees for the building's debris.
The building across from the courthouse was left a shell by a fire May 2. The trustees recently decided that it could not be restored or rebuilt on that site and will demolish the remains.
If the commissioners waive the fees, it will assist the trustees as they plan for a new building on a new site, Chairman Ed Borden wrote the commissioners.
The commissioners will hold work sessions on transportation and manufactured housing appearance standards.
Also Tuesday, the commissioners are scheduled to do the following:
*Pick their representatives to the Economic Development Commission for 2005.
*Hear a presentation about the annual "Scholastic Shootout," held for Wayne County middle school students.
*Ask the N.C. Department of Transportation to take over maintenance of Jacob's Ridge Drive, in the Patetown community.
The board will meet at 8 a.m. Tuesday for its briefing. The meeting will begin at 9 a.m. in the commissioners' chambers, 4th floor, Wayne County Courthouse Annex, S. William St.
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