Zoning protects neighborhoods; Lord has unfair advantage | SummitDaily.com

Zoning protects neighborhoods; Lord has unfair advantage

Jim Pokrandt’s interesting article, which to a point defended Jere Lord’s position as a put-upon tradesman hurt by zoning regulations, begs another point of view.

Zoning regulations were put in place to protect all persons in our community and essentially to separate commercial operations from homesteads. Residential areas should be just that – residential.

Now, there could be some circumstances whereby a tradesman possibly could coexist within a residential area – for instance, a painter, electrician, plumber, etc., where most of the tools of the trade are stored in a van or garage and do not allow the houses or neighborhood to be perceived as commercial. Then a variance could be issued. This is not the case here.

It is somewhat surprising competitors of Jere Lord have not come forward to complain about his particular competitive advantage. Because all of his equipment is parked in his yard and in clear view of his neighbors’ homes – and we’re not all part-time residents – he has a very decided competitive advantage over those businesses that must hire garage and parking areas for their equipment.

It is suggested that Lord would be put out of business if he had to pay to store his equipment. I would contend, given his business success, he’s a better businessman that that.

This is not a one-man shop, but crewed to operate 10 or 12 large pieces of equipment. Think of all the money he has saved, and the increased profit his business has generated by not having a similar cost structure as his competitors.

Let’s be sure, in our sympathy for small businessmen, we do not overlook neighborhoods and families whose homes and lifestyle are valued less because the neighborhood does not retain its natural character.

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