Snowball Stand Has Some St. Martin Neighbors Upset

"I've been here 33 years. My wife has been here 40. Do you think I'd do that to yall," Glenn Corso asked the owners of Snowball Express.

In all his years of living in Foster Heights, little else has made Corso's blood boil hotter than this small purveyor of icy treats.

"Two years after the storm, we finally got out of the FEMA trailer," Corso said. "We've got a $200,000 home. Other people have got the same thing down here, trying to hope for a nice quiet neighborhood like it used to be, and now they come in with a snowball stand."

Corso and some of his neighbors say Snowball Express has no business doing business at the gateway to their neighborhood.

"Our value of our house goes down," resident Brett Blottiaux said. "The safety of our children at the bus stop goes down."

They say their neighborhood is being ruined by the special seasonal zoning exception granted to Steve Hefland and his wife Kim Touchet by the Jackson County Board of Supervisors.

"They use my driveway as a turn around," resident Mike Glass said. "And now my Great Dane, at 7 months old, is dead, buried in the backyard because of this traffic."

But Kim Touchet says since she and her husband aren't planning to rebuild a home here, this is just their way of putting the property to good use.

"The planning commission required us put up a fence," Touchet said. "We put up a fence. We have ample parking. We have one and a half acres here."

She says it wasn't her intention to anger her old neighbors. But she says since the county is likely to rezone this property and others like it on LeMoyne Boulevard as commercial, they shouldn't be giving her little business such a chilly reception.

"I would have thought these people would have enjoyed having something in the community. I just don't know how to make them happy," Touchet said.

The neighbors still have 10 days to file an appeal of the Board's decision in Circuit Court. They say they haven't yet decided if they will do so.