Wrecking yard issue in Dayton at impasse
DAYTON – Attempts to resolve concerns with the Highway 50 Wrecking Yard remain at an impasse.
Assistant Lyon County District Attorney Steve Rye said a recent letter from the Dayton Regional Advisory Council asking for county officials to take appropriate action to clean up the site did not allege any nuisance and there is nothing for County Clerk/Treasurer Nikki Bryan to issue a notice on.
With commissioners in disagreement on which direction to follow next, County Manager Stephen Snyder was asked to set up a workshop on the subject. No date was set for the workshop.
The advisory council wrote the letter following discussion with Commissioner Bob Milz at a recent council meeting. Milz said the county must face up to the problem and asked the board for its help.
“I would like you to ask the commissioners to have the guts to take care of the problem once and for all,” Milz said. “I will help any way I can, but it is up to the board to file a complaint.”
Commissioner David Fulstone said the issue could not be resolved by declaring the highly visible site a nuisance.
“What is a nuisance? There are lots of things we don’t like,” Fulstone said. “The only thing that will heal this is time. There are property rights involved that we probably can’t, and shouldn’t, deal with.”
Milz disagreed, saying “It’s a problem central Lyon County has and we have to deal with it. The longer we say there is nothing we can do, the longer it will exist. We need to try.”
Milz cited information he has received from residents alleging various health problems with the business, including no water, power or heat and the poor health condition of the partially blind owner, Claude McLennan.
“He has a business license telling him what he can and cannot do and he is not doing any of it. He has no permit from the state to operate, in violation of NRS,” Milz said. “This is something we have to take care of. It is a miserable situation.”
Fulstone said the health issues would not resolve the situation.
“If there is a health problem, deal with it, but it won’t make the junkyard go away.”
The junkyard has been in existence since the 1950s. McClennan has owned the business since 1967, before the establishment of county zoning ordinances and regulations.
County officials claim it cannot enforce current codes because the business has not changed ownership since the ordinances were established in the 1970s.
The State Department of Transportation say they have no jurisdiction over the situation because the business is privately owned and is not in the highway right-of-way.
The reasons given in a nuisance complaint filed by Milz in May 1998, stating the business was a hazard to area children and was causing the lowering of property values, were declared invalid and the complaint was voted down.