County nuisance complaint warrants second chance

Board of Supervisors
Kim Brooks
Express Editor

     A Land Use nuisance that was on the Jones County Supervisors’ July 7 agenda turned into a longer issue than the board anticipated.

     Land Use Administrator Michele Lubben presented the nuisance to the board during a public hearing. The nuisance is located at 8356 Slide Rock Rd., property owned by Shawn Walker.

     Lubben said she’s left messages with Walker and sent him an official notice of the public hearing, but he was a no-show.

     “I have no doubt he’s making some attempt,” noted Lubben. “But there’s generally not been a lot of progress.”

     Supervisor Ned Rohwedder, who drove past the property, agreed. “I thought it looked better, but there’s still quite a few vehicles there.”

     Walker was granted a 30-day extension, which expired.

     “It’s tough to give an extension when we haven’t heard from him,” noted Supervisor Joe Oswald.

     The board took action and voted to issue Walker a civil citation.

     Having moved on with the rest of the items on their agenda, a courthouse security officer informed the board that Walker was at the west entrance refusing to answer the public health questions and have his temperature taken for access to the board meeting.

     Noting that Walker was present at the courthouse during the public hearing, the board allowed him to address the nuisance via phone call outside the courthouse. They noted that because he was unwilling to following protocol for admittance, he would not be allowed in-person.

     After a long, drawn-out discussion with Walker, who asked what exactly the county expected of him, the board chose to rescind their previous action and give him a week to correspond with Lubben. That correspondence needed to include a list of licensed vehicles on his property as well as a list of how Walker planned to remedy the nuisance.

     Walker also claimed he had little time to prepare for the hearing. Lubben said the hearing date was set back on June 23.

     “He had plenty of time to contact Michele,” Supervisor Wayne Manternach noted.

     Walker said he needed more time to address the situation. Oswald informed him that under normal circumstances the board would grant a 30-day extension, for those landowners who remain in communication with Lubben.

     “You need to set up a line of communication,” Manternach urged Walker.

  In other county business:

     The board set a public hearing for Tuesday, July 28, at 9:15 a.m. to amend the Fiscal Year 2021 county budget.

     Auditor Janine Sulzner outlined a few items that will be part of the amendment, including the board’s approval to create a new Public Health position with the hiring of Kaci Ginn, approving additional hours for Public Health employees, the courthouse window and HVAC projects, and Conservation department spending authority.

     The board approved the FY 2020 financial report for Heritage Agency on Aging for Senior Dining.

     The board held a public hearing and approved a re-zoning request in the Nachazel First Addition in Fairview Township from A-Agricultural to C-2-Highway Commercial. The re-zoning request was made by owner Laddie and Linda Nachazel Family Trust. The applicant was Jeff Banowetz, who plans to build a commercial business building on the property yet this fall.

     The board approved the purchase of a new mower for Secondary Roads under the state bid price of $18,200.


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