Metal recycling company appears to be doing business despite order
To the Editor:
Following is a copy of a letter we sent to the Wareham Board of Selectmen on January 1 regarding the enforcement of a Cease and Desist Order issued on November 30, 2011 to Atlantic Metal Recycling at 3127 Cranberry Highway.
As of January 10, it appears the company is still doing business at this location.
There is a Zoning Board of Appeals public hearing on Wednesday, January 11, regarding the Atlantic Metal Recycling expansion. The meeting begins at 6:30 p.m. in the Town Hall cafeteria.
On March 21, 2011, the Town of Wareham issued a business certificate to Atlantic Recycling (copy attached). Please note the conspicuous absence of the word “metal” in the name of the business. Please also note there is nothing on this form to indicate the type of work to be performed at this location.
In a letter dated June 15, 2011 (copy attached), Myles Burke of Inspectional Services denied the request of Atlantic Metal Recycling to construct “an outdoor recycling area with a drive on scale” and advised Atlantic Metal Recycling that “this type of activity requires a special permit” from the Zoning Board of Appeals.
By notice dated November 16, 2011 (copy attached), the Town of Wareham notified the abutters of 3127 Cranberry Highway of Atlantic Metal Recycling‘s petition (# 34-11) for special permit or variance so it could enlarge its on-going business operation at 3127 Cranberry Highway.
A metal recycling business is an industrial use and should never have been allowed to open and begin operation in a strip commercial zone without first obtaining a special permit or variance from the Zoning Board of Appeals. It was not until Atlantic Metal Recycling wished to substantially expand its operation by adding a 45-long truck scale, six loading lanes and six large bins encased in concrete blocks that it applied to the ZBA for a public hearing.
On November 29, 2011, we e-mailed a letter to the ZBA outlining the reasons we object to this industrial business operating illegally in a strip commercial zone (copy attached). In addition to the fact that the lot size falls far short of the requirements stated in the Wareham Zoning Bylaws, this type of industrial use is simply inappropriate for this strip commercial zone location which abuts several residential neighborhoods and is a gateway to our community.
On November 30, 2011, Myles Burke issued a Cease and Desist Order (copy attached) which states in part, “All persons are hereby ordered to CEASE and DESIST any and all use or occupancy and to not do any further work on this land or structure.”
In the more than 30 days since the issuance of this order, however, Atlantic Metal Recycling has shown a blatant disregard of this order, and work at 3127 Cranberry Highway continues six days a week.
On several occasions, Mr. Burke personally informed us he was going to visit the business location. He also informed us the owner of the business advised him he was seeking another location in Wareham and needed “a few days” to clear out. [At the request of Atlantic Metal Recycling, the ZBA postponed to January 11, 2012 its hearing on Atlantic’s petition to enlarge its operation. This hearing pertains to an expansion of what is there now – the proposed construction of “an outdoor recycling area with a drive-on scale” – and does not address the fact that this business has been operating for months without the required special permit or variance.]
According to the Wareham Zoning Bylaws, Section 1432, Prosecution of Violation (copy attached), if a Cease and Desist order is ignored, it is up to the Selectmen to “institute the appropriate action” to ensure compliance (see paragraph 1432.1). Further, paragraph 1432.2 addresses the fine for non-compliance (not more than $300.00 for each violation) and clearly states that each day a violation continues is a separate offense.
We respectfully request that the Selectmen look into this matter and instruct the Zoning Enforcement Officer to enforce the Cease and Desist Order he issued on November 30, 2011. We further ask that the Selectmen advise us whether or not the applicable fines have been levied against Atlantic Metal Recycling in the face of non-compliance with the Cease and Desist Order.
John and Deborah McGonnell