LAUREL COUNTY, Ky. — By Rob McDaniel
After hearing from a local homeowner, the London City Council voted to drop a lawsuit against him concerning a dilapidated property on 4th Street.
Property owner Doug Benge, who has recently been involved in litigation with the city due to a rundown, single family dwelling, came before the council Monday with a request to drop the suit against him or instruct him what he would need to do to be compliant with planning and zoning standards.
Benge was brought into litigation after a concerned neighbor issued complaints to the city council earlier this year demanding something be done about the dilapidated dwelling. Benge was delivered a certified letter stating what would need to be done to make his property compliant with safety and zoning standards. However, Benge states he already address the concerns of the council last spring, stating the building was only to be used for storage.
“When I was last before this committee, I think it was last spring, I made it perfectly clear I have no intention of having anyone live in it and I’ll spend whatever I can to make it compliant.” Benge said. “I was led to believe because no one will be living in the property and it will most likely be used as storage, I was in the clear. I left that meeting feeling I was compliant and now I get this letter saying the city is going to eminent domain me and condemn the property.”
Benge told the city council he has always complied with their requests and would continue to do so if they would communicate with him.
“Our main concern was the huge cracks you can see light through in the foundation,” said councilman Judd Weaver.
Several other council members shared Weaver’s concerns of the structural integrity including Bobby Joe Parman, Danny Phelps and Nancy Vaughn.