Umerley wants unfavorable decision overturned Trucking operation was ruled in violation

April 18, 1996|By Jay Apperson | Jay Apperson,SUN STAFF

In a move that is likely to extend a long-running dispute with residents of a White Marsh neighborhood, a trucking company owner has asked the state's highest court to overturn a decision that could force him to move or change his business.

Leo J. Umerley Sr., owner of Umerley Trucking Co., filed papers Monday asking the Court of Appeals to reverse a ruling that his large trucking company cease operations near the small community of Nottingham.

Mr. Umerley, who has been in business at his property on Philadelphia Road for nearly four decades, has been operating outside zoning laws since the late 1970s, according to a ruling issued last month by the Maryland Court of Special Appeals.

Mr. Umerley has said the ruling could force him out of business.

His lawyer, Robert L. Hanley Jr., said yesterday that the ruling should either be overturned or the issue sent back to the county Board of Appeals for reconsideration because the case was caught in a "period of transition" in which three important cases shaped the interpretation of zoning law.

Lawyers in the Umerley case said that the Court of Appeals will likely decide whether to review it in about three months and that, if it takes it up, it could take a year to resolve it.

Residents have complained for years that the trucking business causes noise, dust and traffic problems.

Arnold Jablon, director of the county Department of Permits and Development Management, said yesterday that he has told Mr. Umerley and his lawyer that if they do not win their appeal, they will have 30 days after the decision to conform to zoning law.

He said he has encouraged them to begin preparing for that possibility, either by changing the business to a contractor's storage yard or by moving the trucking operation to the rear of the property and applying for a special exception to zoning laws.

Pub Date: 4/18/96

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