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Judge Rules In Favor Of County In Land Zoning Dispute

Carroll County’s Chief Superior Court Judge John Simpson ruled in favor of the Carroll County government and against a local businessman on Friday.

Simpson’s ruling could put an end to plans for a proposed shooting range and event center on Martin Cemetery Road in Carrollton, which was challenged by the county for more than 2 years.

In 2016, Shot Spot owner, John Paulk had proposed rezoning the property in question from agriculture to commercial. The Carroll County Board of Commissioners denied that request. Among the reasons: properties listed in agriculture zoning districts are done so, with the intent to preserve the open character of land within the county and to promote the development of a type which does not require extensive public facilities and services. Concerns from citizens living nearby the property over potential added noise and potential added traffic, contributed to their decision as well.

In challenging the decision, Paulk has argued that the constitution is too vague and that not allowing him to use his own property for its highest and best use is unconstitutional.

In December of 2018, Paulk challenged the county’s decision to Judge Simpson, and requested $3.6 million to make up for profits that he believed he had lost due to his proposed business not being able to operate.

In his decision on Friday, Judge Simpson found that the law was on the side of the county.

On Sunday, Paulk said he would speak to his attorneys this week to determine a possible next course of action.

 

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