Local News

Residents complain of unsightly yard

Posted December 16, 2009 6:28 p.m. EST
Updated December 16, 2009 7:05 p.m. EST

— Residents in a Franklin County neighborhood near Louisburg have complained about a neighbor's cluttered yard, but the county says there's nothing it can do.

Lawrence Dorsey and Ray Shearon say they are tired of seeing debris they say has been piling up for years in the yard of Denis McFadden.

"About 10 years ago it started, and it just keeps getting worse and worse," Dorsey said. "It's just an eyesore and a health hazard, the way I look at it."

McFadden says the items, which include a collection of appliances, bikes, baskets and stuffed animals, are things he's collected over the years to sell at flea markets.

"I didn't have an orderly way (of storing it), and it just piled up," he said.

McFadden rents the land from Willie Bartholomew, who is vice president of the Franklin County Planning Board.

Neighbors say they have repeatedly asked the county planning department to get involved.

Planning Director Scott Hammerbacher says that, since the items aren't actually trash, the case wouldn't apply under the county's solid waste ordinance.

There nothing that can be done to force Bartholomew or McFadden to clear the land.

The board, however, did ask both to clear the land, but Hammerbacher said there is nothing else he can do.

Both Hammerbacher and Bartholomew say they have been working since summer to move the items to a nearby property so that it's out of sight.

"I never intended to be a burden to anyone," McFadden said.

Hammerbacher says no special treatment was given to Bartholomew.