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Landowner fined $5,000 for building code violations

January 12, 2012

Contact: Jeannie Roberts (440) 885-8181/(216) 346-9935 

PARMA, Ohio –A long battle by the City of Parma Building Department to improve the condition of a dangerous property resulted Wednesday in the owner being fined $5,000.

Prime Properties, the owner of the Marathon gas station at State and Pleasant Valley Roads in Parma was sentenced to the maximum fine of $5,000 by Judge Timothy Gilligan.

Mayor Tim DeGeeter was pleased with the outcome. “I wish to thank the Building Department for their hard work in getting this property into compliance and Judge Gilligan for being firm and fair in the handling of this case.”

Prime Properties was charged with five building code/property maintenance violations in June 2010. In 2009, the station’s underground gasoline tanks were suspected of causing a fire in a neighboring residential property. After the station’s owners were forced to remove the tanks, the property remained an open excavation site for two years.

Customers continued to frequent the convenience store that was still operating on the property, and the City Building Department pursued Prime Properties in order to make the property safe. But the deep holes where tanks were once situated remained uncovered, required safety fencing was often not in place, and other violations present were safety hazards.

The gasoline tanks were replaced in July 2011, but the holes created by the previous tanks were not paved over until weeks later. The City filed charges in June 2010 but the necessary improvements were not made until the fall of 2011.