‘Junkyard’ Bishopville Property Declared Nuisance

‘Junkyard’ Bishopville Property Declared Nuisance

BISHOPVILLE – Concerns about garbage and vermin led the Worcester County Commissioners to initiate the nuisance abatement process for a property in Bishopville this week.

The Worcester County Commissioners agreed on Tuesday to declare the property at 10646 Bishopville Rd.—commonly known as the old Bishopville movie theater — a nuisance. The property owner will now be advised to address the issue or request a hearing with the commissioners.

“In my opinion this is a junkyard in the middle of a community where a lot of people take pride in their houses,” Commissioner Jim Bunting said. “For this to continue to exist is just wrong.”

According to Ed Tudor, the county’s director of development review and permitting, the property at the intersection of Bishopville Road and St. Martins Neck Road has been the source of several complaints in recent years. Most recently, the complaints allude to rats on the property as a result of “accumulated personal property.” Bunting said the lot was full of piles of junk covered in tarps.

Tudor said officials from the Worcester County Health Department and the Worcester County Department of Environmental Programs had visited the property. Because the property was posted with a “no trespassing” sign, officials were forced to view it from the street.

“Would it be accurate to say you know nothing about what’s going on underneath those tarps?” Bunting asked the health department’s Bart Dorsch.

Dorsch said that would be accurate.

Bunting said constituents had complained of rats on the property and he said he’d seen some there himself. He said the yard was covered with junk that was under tarps.

“Anybody can take one look at the photographs and see these tarps are not placed over it properly,” Bunting said. “Lord knows what’s underneath there, how much water’s accumulating, how many mosquitoes are breeding, how much of this is running off onto the ground, which if you’ve looked at it, it runs right across into the Bishopville Pond.”

He said the property should be considered a health-related nuisance because of the vermin and potential mosquito breeding. He said the property’s septic drain field should also be visible and not covered with anything even though it was in fact covered in personal property.

The commissioners voted unanimously to proceed with the nuisance abatement process.

About The Author: Charlene Sharpe

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Charlene Sharpe has been with The Dispatch since 2014. A graduate of Stephen Decatur High School and the University of Richmond, she spent seven years with the Delmarva Media Group before joining the team at The Dispatch.