Marlin and Mary Knepp, who reside west of the Shore Mennonite Church on old U.S. 20, were fined $2587.50 at the Monday county commissioner meeting. The fine was levied after Ordinance Enforcement Officer Jason Boggs testified that, in his opinion, the nuisance still exists.\
The nuisance ordinance violation case was first presented to commissioners in March of this year and has been continued a number of times. Each time, Knepp has been called back before the commissioners to explain what he has done to comply with the order to abate the nuisance. Each time progress has been noted.
County Planning Director Robert Shanahan said, “There has been some improvement on the property and he has definitely made an attempt to clean-up and comply.” (with the order of the commissioners court).
Commissioner Larry Miller reported that he has visited the site and that there has definitely been improvement. “He (Knepp) has taken another off-farm job and is currently working on the clean-up project as he can.”
Knepp replied to the commissioners that he feels, as of today, he has nothing on his property that would not be found on any Amish farm. He asked commissioners to show some compassion and said that he has brought nothing new onto the property for a long time. “I will continue cleaning up as time permits,” he concluded.
Knepp handed a check, which paid the fine, to County Auditor Kay Myers at the meeting. Commissioners then recessed the hearing for six months, keeping the remaining $2587.50 fine in place pending further clean-up.
Commissioners approved an agreement with Amanda Darrow in the amount of $13,000 to administer the county’s “Teen Court” program for 2013. Teen Court is a program started by Circuit Court Judge J. Scott VanderBeck.
Another court-related service contract for 2013 services was approved. This agreement with Gust Community Services is for the supervision of persons assigned to community service by the county court system.
Commissioners also signed statements that they have not violated the newly enacted state statutes prohibiting the employment of relatives or entered into contracts for the county with companies employing relatives.