Tire pile blamed on budget cuts - WALB.com, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

Tire pile blamed on 'budget cuts'

By Jim Wallace - bio | email

ALBANY, GA (WALB) - An Albany business owner must clean up thousands of tires stored improperly, just feet from one of the city's busiest roads, by Monday. If Billy Baumgartel doesn't meet that deadline, city code enforcers will issue citations.

The tires are in the old Pritchett Ford building on North Slappey. Baumgartel was supposed to get a grant from the Environmental Protection Division to pay for the tire removal, but that money disappeared with state budget cuts.

City officials say the tires are a health and fire hazard. Baumgartel's attorney says he is doing all he can to clean up the problem, but would not answer a question about the fees paid by customers to dispose of the tires. 

"He does have a lot of tires and he clearly understands that," said Baumgartel's attorney Phil Cannon. "And we will be submitting a plan to the fire department on how that is going to take place, and how we are going to correct it very soon."

Cannon says the Baumgartel family has run their tire business in Albany for more than 50 years. He blames the state grant process for the problem and hopes city officials will work with them, but when asked what Baumgartel did with the disposal fee charged for each tire sold, Cannon answered "No comment."

 

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