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A judge yesterday ordered the temporary closing of a Spencer Township auto salvage business to get the wner, Mark Gorney, to comply with township zoning regulations.
Judge Patrick Foley found Mr. Gorney in contempt in Lucas County Common Pleas Court for disobeying the terms of a consent order approved in August. The judge told Mr. Gorney to close his business, King of the Road Auto Parts, 9414 Angola Rd., for three weeks to get the property into compliance.
Mr. Gorney was sued in February, 2001, by the township trustees after he expanded his business, L.G. Development Corp., into property that was not zoned for auto salvage operations, violating township zoning codes.
Under the consent order, Mr. Gorney agreed to remove junk vehicles and salvage parts from property not zoned for the salvage operations and install fencing, landscaping, and other enhancements on the remaining land, satisfying zoning regulations.
The consent order followed nearly two years of legal wrangling over the zoning dispute. The case originally was handled by Judge Judith Lanzinger and mediated by Judge Richard McQuade.
Kenneth Phils, the township s zoning inspector, testified yesterday that Mr. Gorney virtually ignored all the requirements spelled out in the consent order that would have put the property into compliance with township zoning codes.
Mr. Phils said junk autos and parts remained on land not zoned for the salvage operation. He said fencing was not installed, other fencing had not been set back 15 feet from the road, trees had not been planted, and dirt mounds in excess of 42 inches in height had not been removed.
Judge Foley initially ordered Mr. Gorney to cease operations immediately, but he stayed the closure until Monday at Mr. Gorney s request.
Judge Foley also told David Simko, the township s attorney, to provide a report to the court on Feb. 19 detailing the progress made by Mr. Gorney.
Mr. Gorney was ordered to pay the township s legal costs for yesterday s hearing.
Judge Foley also warned Mr. Gorney that he could be sent to jail for failing to comply with the consent order.