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Calibur Car Wash closes, fines left uncollected

A local business owner has closed the doors of his shop, leaving behind an almost $1,000 tab.

Calibur Car Wash, 11133 Kingston Pike, at the center of controversy regarding stormwater ordinance violations, had been levied $950 in civil penalties in August.

In recent weeks, the business has closed its doors.

Calibur owner Mike Thomas did not return calls by press deadline.

A sign posted on the business’s gasoline pumps stated: “Due to updating gas equipment, we cannot sell gas at this time. Sorry for any inconvenience. Thank You MGT.”

The furniture and equipment from inside the convenience store has been removed, as has all signage.

Interim Town Administrator Gary Palmer said Thomas never paid the $950 fine, which had been decreased from an original penalty of $1,120.

Thomas was levied the fine after clearing a detention pond behind his business without any erosion control and for ignoring stop work orders.

“I’ve cleared up a dump right in the center of Farragut … I spent a substantial amount of money on a sore spot,” Thomas told Farragut’s Board of Mayor and Aldermen, Thursday, Aug. 27.

“People come in … and make a city dump out of it, and I get crucified for cleaning it up,” he added.

Recently, Town staff and elected officials have discussed a lien process in regards to Town-imposed fines.

“I spoke with Sherry Witt, Knox County Register of Deeds, two weeks ago about this issue,” Palmer said.

“She stated the Town — through the Town Attorney’s Office — could draft a legal lien instrument, execute it, and the County will record it. 

“Once recorded, the title for that property will not be clear until the lien is released.  I intend on recording a lien against the Calibur Car Wash property for the amount imposed by the Town Board,” he added.

Thomas had been dealing with Town staff over the ordinance violations since January. In August, he told the Board the situation would have been resolved quicker if he had just paid the original fine, which was $250.

“Why didn’t you go ahead and pay it then?” Vice Mayor Dot LaMarche asked.

“It’s not a matter of the fine; it’s a matter of principle,” Thomas said.

Thomas also told the Board he might pursue legal action.


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