Mesa County plans legal action if properties aren’t cleaned soon

Two landowners face deadline to remove junk, old vehicles

Mesa County commissioners agreed Tuesday to take legal action against two property owners if they don’t remove junk and unregistered vehicles from their land within a certain amount of time.

Under compliance plans approved by the board, John and Sylvia Henson have until July 8 to clean up their property at 562 Beverly Lane, while Jose and Peggy Gallegos have until Nov. 8 to do the same with their land at 2672 Mitchell Court.

Tony Piotrowski, county code enforcement officer, told commissioners that officers have worked with both couples for more than two years to get them to comply with the county’s land-development code. The code forbids property owners from operating junkyards or keeping junk in residential areas.

The county first received a complaint in 2007 that the Hensons were keeping junk and several unregistered vehicles on their quarter-acre property on Orchard Mesa. Piotrowski said code enforcement officers visited the property several times over the years and observed “some progress but not total progress.”

He said all of the unregistered vehicles are now registered and most of the junk has been removed. The compliance plan calls for the Hensons to build a 23-foot-long fence to contain and screen any items.

As for the Gallegoses, Piotrowski said the county received a complaint from a neighbor in April 2008 and, during a visit the following month, found more than 10 unregistered vehicles and a “considerable” amount of trash on their quarter-acre property near Connected Lakes State Park.

Piotrowski said four unregistered vehicles and some junk remain on-site.

Jose Gallegos suggested to commissioners the county needs to look into several of his neighbors who he said run auto body shops and keep unregistered vehicles at their homes and “nobody tells them nothing.”

“I really feel like I’m being singled out,” he said.


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