Middlefield's Planning and Zoning Commission is once again considering how to move forward with what some have called a Route 66 landmark. Others describe the property as nothing more than a junkyard.
In July, the commission sought legal action against Jimmy D's Antiques Plus owner James DiCaprio after multiple attempts to get DiCaprio to clean up the property failed.
But to the chagrin of some commission members, town attorney Matt Willis and zoning enforcement officer Geoff Colegrove decided without the commission's approval not to take DiCaprio to court over his non-compliance.
"Prior to that court date Mr. Colegrove and I were at the site and there had been progress so that it was in substantial compliance, so rather than proceeding on that particular court date we marked the court date off," Willis told commission members during Wednesday night's PZC meeting.
DiCaprio has faced pressure and litigation from the town for years to clean up his antiques business, which some have said is not only an eyesore, but a safety hazard.
Colegrove said he visits the property at least twice a month and that recently DiCaprio has been better at complying with his requests. Colegrove said DiCaprio is currently trying to sell the property.
"He'd like to get out of there, and we'd all like to see him leave. He expressed to me his lack of interest in continuing the business," Colegrove said.
The news did not seem to entirely settle some commission members.
"I don't really want to be playing this game of cat and mouse," said Kevin Boyle.
Willis said the situation would require constant vigilance and told the commission that the town could take DiCaprio to court at anytime if he is non-compliant.
"The hammer is really that court date and if that's what it takes to get the place cleaned up, that's what it's going to take," said Colegrove.