- Special Sections
- Public Notices
My name is Carmin Gaines, and I am one of the owners of Elmar’s BP in Elk Creek. We legally obtained a permit from the Planning and Zoning Commission for our gas price sign, which you may have noticed has been taken down, thanks to our local commission.
Three weeks after the sign was in place, Planning and Zoning revoked the permit saying the sign was too large.
The erroneous permit they issued to us was like the one they issued to another local business owner recently to do an extension on his property. We are aware of multiple permits issued by planning and zoning that were mistakes.
We have proof – that we have shown to Judge-Executive Bill Karrer and Mayor Don Pay, and would be happy to show to anyone who would like to see it – of what we believe to be untrue statements made by planning and zoning officials in an effort to prevent us from getting a variance like the one issued to that other local business owner.
Just a couple of months prior to the commission revoking our sign permit, we had complained that they had issued yet another erroneous permit to a local business owner to put a sign on our property. We ultimately prevailed in our argument that the planning and zoning commission has no ownership claim to Elmar’s BP, and cannot sell anyone a permit to do anything with our property.
Our business has had to pay approximately $30,000 in legal costs to defend itself against the complaints of planning and zoning.
No business owner should have to endure this.
One of our attorneys said that a church sign near us is out of compliance, and we believe another business near us is also out of compliance.
We have consistently argued at planning and zoning meetings that the business’s sign is out of compliance, and asked, “why isn’t anything being done to them?”
We recently found out that one of the [members of the Board of Adjustments] is also on the board of directors of that business.
That board member should have refused to vote on our issue given his close ties with the business. Instead, he led the charge against us in an effort to enforce rules against our business.
It appears to us that our local planning and zoning commission is attempting to give preferential treatment to businesses in Taylorsville, while treating business owners in Elk Creek like second-class citizens.
It is my understanding that, one of the [members of the Board of Adjustments] owns a business in Taylorsville – could that be the reason for wanting the city of Taylorsville to be the hub of commerce for Spencer County?
This agenda has cost taxpayers thousands of dollars, and we believe those responsible should be removed immediately.
Spencer County taxpayers deserve board members who embody honesty and integrity.
Elmar’s BP would like to thank Bobby Smith for his kind words of support of our issue in last week’s Spencer Magnet.
We’d also like to thank both the chair of the Board of Adjustments, Bruce Kaphammer, and board member, James Allen Tipton, for speaking up on our behalf, in an effort to see that we would get justice in this matter, and for refusing to vote against us.
Finally, we’d like to thank the 700 Spencer County residents who signed our seven-day petition stating that you supported Elmar’s BP keeping its gas price sign.
Your support and wishes meant the world to both our family and our employees.
In conclusion, I’d like to ask that any of you in Spencer County who feel that you have also been treated unfairly by our local Planning and Zoning Commission give me a call 502-422-0100, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org, or simply stop in Elmar’s BP and tell us your story.