WINCHESTER –The Frederick County Board of Supervisors voted 4 to 2 to deny a conditional use permit for a kennel on a 5.11-acre property at 409 Brill Road in Star Tannery.
Supervisors Shawn Graber, Bob Wells, Blaine Dunn and Josh Ludwig voted to deny the permit. Supervisors Charles DeHaven Jr. and Judith McCann-Slaughter voted to approve it.
Applicant Christina Boyer, who lives on the property, owns 14 dogs. However, the permit would have allowed him to have up to six non-owned dogs on the property.
Prior to the vote, Boyer and Graber engaged in a heated exchange. Graber, a neighbor of Boyer, previously spoke out against the permit at a June 15 Planning Commission meeting, citing noise concerns. He said several people also contacted him complaining about noise coming from Boyer’s property due to barking dogs.
Dunn said he heard that Planning Commission members Betsy Brumback and Mollie Brannon never crossed Boyer’s site, despite attempts to do so.
“They haven’t contacted me personally to try to schedule a tour,” Boyer told Dunn. “Mr. Graber contacted me to try to schedule a visit. And for personal reasons, I implemented my constitutional right to protect myself on my property and imposed a trespassing ban on him.”
Graber said he contacted Boyer to try to view his property and said it was “not out of the norm”.
“Every CUP that’s come before me since I’ve been on the board, I’ve asked and reached out to them to do a tour of the property with members of the Planning Commission,” Graber said. “We do this so that we can have a conversation with the candidate and get our questions answered.”
He then addressed a previous instance where he set foot on Boyer’s property.
“My wife and I have been very nice to you,” Graber said. “When you moved in seven and a half years ago, we walked across the street, shook your hand, and to my knowledge, that was the last time my wife set foot on your property. There was four and a half years old, that’s the last time I set foot on your property and it was to plow snow with a farm tractor because your husband was out with a walker trying to shovel the snow behind his van. This was the last time I was on your property. After asking four times for the opportunity to view your property, you serve me a “no trespassing notice”. I hadn’t set foot on your property, one foot on your property, in four and a half years that I was there with the farm tractor pushing the snow.”
Boyer said she sent an email asking all supervisors except him to visit her property. She also showed the Planning Commission a video tour of her property on June 15.
“The reason I’m not asking you to visit my property is that I don’t trust you,” Boyer said. “You stopped my mom on the road asking her who she is, why she’s there and what she’s doing around because she was in a rental car, and you didn’t recognize the car. The white Camaro without the front tag? Yeah, that was my mom. When my family comes in behind you, … if we’re behind you and we’re turning into Brill Road at the same time, instead of turning into the road at the same time, you turn into the church over there on the corner of the road so you can turn behind my family’s vehicle I have it on video.
Boyer also said neighbors told him Graber had asked about his family and possessions. She said she didn’t want to give Graber “ammunition” against her and was worried he was misrepresenting the information.
She told Graber, “I’m not allowing you a step on my property. I’m protecting my family from you.”
Graber said he received death threats and frequently stopped to get out of a car to make sure no one was following him home. He said he also had a camera in his car.
Graber noted that Boyer previously claimed that she puts her dogs’ feces in a bag and puts them in the landfill. He asked her what dump, and she said Star Tannery dump.
“Isn’t that appropriate?” ” she asked.
Graber said it was not appropriate and showed a sign at the Star Tannery landfill stating that animal waste was not permitted to be disposed of there.
“I obviously didn’t know I wasn’t able to do it there because half the time it’s not me bringing the trash to the dump, it’s my husband,” Boyer said.
Wells asked him if his business could continue if the permit was denied. Boyer, breaking down in tears, said that if the permit was refused, she would have to go to people’s individual homes to care for their dogs, which would negatively impact her income due to her inability to oversee several dogs simultaneously and the cost of fuel. .
Wells said: “I have to deny it only because I don’t see any good in this between these two parties,” he said.
Also on Wednesday, supervisors unanimously approved a conditional use permit for a slaughterhouse in the Back Creek district. Plaintiff Justin Boyce wants to establish a slaughterhouse on 110.89 acres of rural farmland at 160 Flickertail Lane in Star Tannery. His property is located half a mile north of Wardensville Grade (Hwy 608), immediately to the west and bounded by Richard Lane (Hwy 790).
Boyce plans to have a 4,800 square foot slaughterhouse to process up to 50 animals per week. The animals will either be raised on his farm or brought to the property by other farmers. Up to three employees will be involved in the operations of the slaughterhouse.
Solid waste disposal will be conducted off property and handled by a waste disposal company. A condition of the license prohibits the on-site commercial sale of meat and poultry.
The board also voted unanimously to approve
· A conditional use permit for SPBJJ LLC to establish an indoor recreation business on 1.89 acres of property zoned M1 (light industrial) at 210 Fort Collier Road. The plaintiffs intend to use 5,000 square feet of a 16,000 square foot building for a martial arts gymnasium. Hours of operation will be 6 a.m. to 10 a.m. and 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. weekdays and 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. weekends.
· A pump and carry permit for an existing residence at 426 Winchester Drive.