Supervisors vote to shut down scrap business - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

Supervisors vote to shut down scrap business

By WLOX Staff

BAY ST. LOUIS, MS (WLOX) -  The battle over whether to allow a scrap metal business to continue to operate in a Hancock County neighborhood was fought before the Board of Supervisors Wednesday.

It was an appeal hearing for the owner of the Fricke Road business.  Last month planning and zoning commissioners ruled against  the owner because they said he never received the proper permits to legally operate the scrap metal operation and the business was  located in a residential neighborhood.

Southern All Metals Recycling has operated on Fricke Road for more than four years. Nearby neighbors say the scrape mental business has slowly become a nuisance.  " Now you've got 18 wheelers you've got cars parked in the road you can't get in and out.  Monday this week a truck parked on the side of the road and I couldn't get in." said Fricke Road resident Jimmy Thornton. 

Resident Marie Blake, echoed his words.  "It's true the road has been blocked and it's been blocked to fire trucks ambulances anybody that needs to get down through there."  Residents say the traffic nightmare created on narrow Fricke Road is just part of the problem.  "I've had numerous dishes break falling off the counters from the vibrations from their business dropping their metal their cars loading their vehicles or whatever."  said resident Karen Johnston. 

Supporters of the business also spoke-up.  "He generates a lot of jobs for folks who are otherwise without work at all."  said businessman Timothy Testerman.  Testerman said the scrap mental business has been good for the local economy, putting people to work at the facility and allowing people even in the neighborhood to earn money, Testerman said.  "I know there are a ton of folks that every single day all they do is scrap.  Some of the people who live on Fricke Road as a matter of fact most of the people that live on Fricke Road have brought scrap to that scrap yard." 

But Karen Johnson countered.  "He may be a benefit to the community but not where he sits, not our community."  Philip Rosen is the owner of the business.  His attorney, Virgil Gillespie argued his clients rights as a property owner have been violated.   "If we get a bad ruling we're going to have to appeal because you've got a man who has been allowed to operate a business for four years."  

Resident Marie Blake disapproved.  "If you all don't close this thing down then I hope somebody moves one in next to you guys." 

In the end County Supervisors sided with planning and zoning commissioners, saying the business must close. The owner of the business has 10 days to appeal the Supervisors decision to county court.

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