Skeen: Get off my back!

I'm a taxpaying man, owner of C&S Motors, sick and tired of being bothered by Scottsville's city council and their hired guns. Ever since the talk of big bucks coming to town began, they've been trying to feed me to the wolves [News: "Trash or treasure? Scottsville car dealer outraged," February 27] (

I've lost peace of mind, and it's upset my family to no end. I've had to hire a lawyer to defend my good name.

I say if they want a war, they should go to Iraq and help take down the regime. I want Mayor R. Stephen Phipps and Zoning Administrator Wyatt Shields to leave me alone once and for all.

Some time ago, an engineer examined the bank behind my property, verifying that it was okay, but Shields wanted another opinion. Then it was reported to the DMV that I was operating without a license; I've been licensed over 40 years.

They've claimed I'm turning my dealership into a mobile home sales lot, because I put a "for sale" sign on a trailer I don't use anymore. They've bothered me about painting my porch. My wife even received a harassing phone call from a council representative, who later apologized, saying that he'd made a mistake.

I've always pitched in, shoveling snow in town when there was no one else to do it. Before the dike was built, I used my dump truck to push the mud down the business district to clean it up.

I was on the Charlottesville/Albemarle Rescue Squad seven years, and helped get the Fluvanna Squad up and running, signing the bank note to put the first new truck on the road. I served as an Albemarle County special deputy sheriff, unpaid, for 10 years.

I'm a United States Army veteran and member of American Legion Post 74. Letters from former Mayor Thacker and W. G. Richardson, Fluvanna County Sheriff, tell about my outstanding citizenship and community service.

Recently, in The Hook, Phipps and Shields said they're working to bring C&S Motors into conformance with zoning and continuing to monitor the sale of my trailer [Mail, "No Williamsburg on the James," March13, 2003].

The Council knows the asking price for the trailer. Maybe some of that big Scottsville money could be used to buy it.

Last time anyone came by to see how I was doing, was Thacker. Mayor Phipps has never stopped by to visit. All I've got out of him has been a hard time. They've called my place an eyesore.

Well, maybe the Council could do some volunteer work in the community-­ put their money where their mouth is: Come up and wash cars for a day, paint the porch. too. They could even empty out the trailer. That may help me sell it faster!

Sometimes I think that all Phipps and Shields have to do with their time is harass me. I'm grandfathered in; I'm not breaking any laws. Next, they'll want me to get a permit to go to the bathroom.

Emery N. Skeen
C & S Motors