Elk Point residents fight to keep local auto repair shop
By Robert Lowe, Multimedia Journalist/ Weekend Anchor - email
ELK POINT, SD (KTIV) -
Monday night, about 50 Elk Point community members gathered at City Hall to support a local business.
Country Estates, an automotive repair shop, closed its doors as it deals with ongoing citations. About a year ago, Country Estates' owner, Dennis Pitz, began receiving letters notifying him that he was in violation of an ordinance.
The Elk Point City Council showed concerns about tires, cars, and other items around the repair store and told Pitz to clean up his property.
However, Pitz vows that his property is up to code.
"One thing I know for sure is that a nuisance deal is a serious deal. I have no grounds where you guys are even coming up with this stuff. We're talking about a couple cars I get stuck with for whatever reasons that get stuck off the rode, the guy can't afford to fix them and we throw some parts in them and haul them away," said Pitz.
The city council agreed with community members and said they want Country Estates to remain in town. The council unanimously voted that the property's current state is acceptable.
"The whole town wants to keep him here and the council is very supportive in keeping him here and we want to work with him to make sure he doesn't violate the ordinance," said City Council member Deb McCreary.
Despite community support and current approval from the city council, Pitz believes it's just a matter of months before another ordinance violation is filed. He said he does not believe the city council is willing to work with him and he will leave Elk Point.
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