County runs out of patience with King

From the perspective of Marion County Commission, Danniel King has run out of time — and options.

On Monday, the commissioners repealed an extension that was granted to King Nov. 26. The extension was recalled because it appeared that King had lied to the governing body about issues stemming from his non-compliant salvage operation in rural Peabody.

County zoning administrator Bobbi Strait reported Monday that she had talked with the surveyor from Garber's Surveying who had placed the boundary markers on King's property.

Strait said the surveyor had indicated that the property line was not in the middle of the ditch or in the county's right-of-way as King had contended at the Nov. 26 meeting.

At that meeting, King also had insisted that the county had taken a portion of his property by gradually moving the location of the road each time it was bladed.

Acting public works director John Summerville said he did not see that the county ditch was causing any problems. At a previous meeting, Summerville had reported to the commission that the road had not been moved.

"I totally disagree with his (King's) claims," Summerville said.

The real "kicker" for the commission came when Strait showed the board a letter from Kansas Department of Transportation. In that letter, King had applied for a state permit for his salvage operation which required a county conditional use permit. When Strait contacted KDOT she was told King had called KDOT and said he was in compliance with the county.

"I don't appreciate being lied to," commission chairman Randy Dallke said, "and I don't appreciate him (King) lying to the state."

"He's had plenty of time to become compliant," commissioner Dan Holub said. "I didn't support the last extension and will not support a future extension."

Commissioner Bob Hein agreed that he didn't appreciate being deceived.

Strait said Robson was willing to prepare a letter to the state regarding the "unsubstantiated allegations."

Dallke then said he was ready to rescind the extension which became a motion. The motion was passed, 3-0, which means the commission will not review any progress made by King on the fence and the future of King's business was in the hands of the state.

The issues all began when King was "turned in" nearly a year ago for operating an unlicensed salvage business that had become a nuisance.

Following state guidelines, as part of the conditions to obtain a county conditional use permit, King was required to clean up debris from his property and erect a fence barrier.

The commission gave King six months, from March to October, to erect 75-80 percent of the fence and to obtain a survey.

When King appeared before the commission in October, he said the weather, his health, and surveying issues kept him from completing the necessary work. At that time, King had stated that the survey revealed his property boundaries were not where he thought they were which led to extra work on his part to prepare his land for the fence.

King also claimed that miscommunication between King and Strait and King and KDOT had exacerbated the situation.

At the Oct. 8 meeting, the commission determined that King had sufficient time to complete the necessary tasks to have a permit issued and denied his request for an extension.

With the county denying the permit, the state could not issue a permit and informed King that legal action would begin which included the state disposing of the salvage debris and seizing assets to pay for the clean-up.

King and his attorney, Jay Sizemore, asked the commission at the Nov. 26 meeting for a 30-day extension.

With assistance from Marion County Attorney Susan Robson, an agreement was reached where the county was going to give King until the Jan. 7 meeting to have 500 feet of fence erected and posts in place for the remaining fence line.

King contended at that meeting that the county had infringed on his property during the years by moving the county road. King said the surveyor stakes indicated his property went into a ditch which is part of the county's right-of-way.

The Jan. 7 deadline was more than 30 days but the commission wanted to allow sufficient time for county officials to review the situation and make a determination if there was an infringement issue.