Quarry Wine Garden Hearing and BOA Highlights from Dec. 11

By Dianne Sudbrock

The New Melle Board of Aldermen held a hearing on Tuesday, Dec. 11 to consider revoking the business license of The Quarry Wine Garden for alleged noncompliance with city ordinances.

The hearing lasted about an hour and 20 minutes. Lynette Petruska, attorney for the Quarry Wine Garden argued that the city has treated the Quarry Wine Garden unfairly and has not held other properties/developers in the city to the same standards - specifically related to concrete entrances and gravel parking lots.

Kurt Daniels of Cochran Engineering (the city’s engineering firm) testified that the problem is a site plan issue. He said the city is waiting for the Quarry Wine Garden to submit a site plan for the expanded parking lot that has been prepared by a Certified Professional Engineer and shows water retention/detention facilities that comply with city ordinances.
Petruska argued a number of different points of procedure during the hearing, suggesting the matter could end up in circuit court.

In the end, Mayor Richard West said the city would take the matter under advisement, and asked for a motion for a continuance to a later date.  No specific date to reconvene the hearing was set.

In the mean time, the Quarry Wine Garden remains open for business as usual.

The hearing was followed by a brief Planning and Zoning Meeting, and then a regular Board of Alderman Meeting, which began at 7:38 p.m. In open forum, Doug Jungermann (Quarry Wine Garden) asked who enforces site plan compliance, such as in the case of Work Horse Construction, which was given a year’s extention to build a concrete entrance, but still has a gravel entrance. The parking lots at New Melle Sports and Recreation were also brought up. The mayor stated the city would follow up. Two employees of the Quarry Wine Garden implored the board not to close the Wine Garden, because it would put 53 people out of work. Alderman Don Hendrich stated that closing the business was the last thing he wanted to do, but from a liability standpoint, the board had a responsibility to ensure that businesses in the city complied with the city’s ordinances and state law, including DNR requirements.

In other business that was taken up at the meeting: The 2019 budget was adopted. An ordinance to conduct the April municipal election was approved. The city attorney said a court date of January 22, 2019 had been set for the Sullivan Lawsuit. Cochran Engineering was directed to proceed with constuction plans to build a sidewalk on the east side of Hwy. Z in front of NMSR. The city accepted a bid for snow plowing services from Karrenbrock Construction. (Karrenbrock was the only company that submitted a bid.) The Mayor said he had requested a bid from St. Charles County to increase police patrols in the city limits.

The next Board of Aldermen meeting was set for January 10, 2019.