The Madera Planning Commission voted Tuesday to revoke a conditional use permit for a swap meet that residents say contributes to traffic jams and trashy streets.
The commission's decision likely ends the operation of a swamp meet that has had a permit to operate at an old drive-in theater on Lincoln Avenue, east of Highway 99, since 1973.
Every Sunday, the swap meet drew thousands of people, but it came under fire when neighbors complained that visitors left residential streets littered with trash and clogged up roads with parked cars.
After Tuesday night's vote, Madera resident Michael Marin praised the commission.
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"They gave us our neighborhood back," he said. The agenda item was unusual because Bob Gran, who owns the swap meet, is on the Planning Commission.
Because of the conflict, he did not vote.
A city staff report concluded that the swap meet's conditional use permit should be revoked because Gran was in violation of several conditions designed to control trash, noise and parking.
Gran can appeal the permit's revocation to the City Council.
He could not be reached to comment.
In the past, Gran said he would have to close the swap meet if he is forced to make expensive upgrades to his property and the surrounding area.
The movie theater also would have to close because it could not survive financially without the swap meet, he said.
A conditional use permit for the Sunday-only swap meet was first approved in October 1973, a city staff report said.
In 2008, however, Gran added Tuesday night and Wednesday swap meets without getting permission from the city.
Neighbors complained, and the city told Gran he needed a permit amendment.
He applied, and it was granted by the city in January, but with certain conditions related to parking, trash pickup and other issues.
When Gran failed to abide by the decision, Gran was ordered to revert to Sunday-only swap meets.
Marin said Tuesday night that he has been fighting on behalf of neighbors near the swap meet for more than a year.
He said commissioners gave Gran ample opportunity to fix the problems and keep his permit, but "he failed miserably."