Commissioners extend help to market, fireworks stand
by Dennis Sharkey
A couple of local temporary business operations will be allowed to continue despite a county regulation that has stopped them from getting a conditional use permit.
Representatives from the Perry Farmers Market and a fireworks stand that operates next to a gas station at U.S. 24 Highway and Ferguson Road met with commissioners on Monday seeking help because their permits were denied because of unpaid taxes by the landowner.
At issue is a county regulation that does not allow for conditional use permits on land where taxes are delinquent.
The Perry Farmers Market operates on Fridays from 4 to 6:30 p.m. through the second Friday in October but was being faced with shutting down or moving. Board member Kathy Youngquist told commissioners that shutting down could be a possibility for the market because the vendors depend on the location.
Also at the meeting were representatives of a fireworks stand that operates for 10 days each year at the same location.
“It’s hurting everybody but the property owners,” Youngquist said.
First District Commissioner Lynn Luck said she sympathized with both groups. However the county regulations were put in place to ensure that taxes are paid.
“I think it’s real beneficial to have the farmers market there,” Luck said. “It’s not one of those situations we can overlook and then have a bunch of things come up afterwards.
“Having people pay their taxes is very important,” Luck added.
Fireworks stand operator Doug Fisher said it is too late for his stand to find a new location and that fireworks need to be ordered now.
Luck asked if the market could move. Youngquist said sales and participation at the market decline when it moves. She said when the market relocates for two weeks in the summer the effect is felt.
“The vendors believe the ability to have it at that location impacts them financially,” Youngquist said.
She added that many customers say that they thought the market left when it moves for just a couple of weeks.
Commissioners came to a consensus to give the two groups until July 10 to convince the property owner to pay the taxes.
In other actions:
• Commissioners approved the annexation of a piece of land near the 4200 block of K-237 Highway to Rural Water District No. 1.
• Planning and Zoning Director Bill Noll said operators of a sand dredging plant near Perry have cleared the final hurdle for federal regulators and construction at the site will begin soon.
“They’re going to start moving down there,” Noll said.
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