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Board okays balloon storage at Prince property

Published September 24. 2010 05:00PM

At a zoning hearing in Bowmanstown on Sept. 21, it was unanimously decided to allow Duane and Lavonna Schleicher, who have the Prince property, to have both Walsh and Hi On You as tenants.

The board's ruling stipulates that no other use will be granted at the site, located in the industrial-commercial zone at 700 Lehigh Street.

On Jan. 15, 2009, Schleicher received a permit for Walsh Construction to use the property for offices and warehouses. A letter was sent saying that was to be the only use. Schleicher tried to sell the property for industrial use shortly after he bought it.

On May 11, 2009 a violation notice was sent for a second use by High On You Ballooning. District Judge Bruce Appleton fined Schleicher $950. An application was submitted Jan. 29, 2010 was turned down by zoning officer Duane Dellecker and appealed to the zoning hearing board because it would be a second use. He said Prince had a variety of uses but they were all under the Prince umbrella. The main use was manufacturing.

Borough solicitor James Preston asked what the relevance was by going back to Prince. Zoning solicitor Michael Muffley allowed it to be included in the record.

Schleicher's attorney, Keith Strohl, said the activities were nonconforming under Prince and that activities have not changed.

Preston said the nonconforming use was discontinued when the property was sold.

High On You needed storage and office space.

Dellecker said it is a single lot and has only one use by right.

Schleicher said he was using the property for storage of two cars for which he was getting paid, for his own equipment storage, and use of repair shops. The balloon company was also using the property before the permit for Walsh was received.

When the permit for Walsh was presented, it did not say the balloon company or Schleicher were using the property.

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