What would you do if your home went from a quiet country spot, to suddenly next door neighbors with a commercial motocross race track?
That’s what happened to some residents in rural Daviess County, who say their quite lives were destroyed after their neighbor built an AMA-sanctioned race track on his land.
Michael Leighty has lived in Rural Daviess County for 22 years. He says it was a quiet couple of decades, until recently.
“I have a neighbor who built a commercial racing facility,” says Leighty.
Leighty says his neighbor has lived there for 17 years, but it’s the last 16 months that have been the problem after he built Parsons Motocross Compound.
“Everybody in this neighborhood has been here long before the track was,” says Leighty.
Leighty provided WTWO with video from the facility, and says the track activity has been the source of unbearable noise and disruption ever since.
“Our neighborhood has been destroyed, and I can’t afford a 60-70 thousand dollar loss in my value just because some guy wants to run a race track in my back yard. It’s not fair,” says Leighty.
Leighty believes Daviess County officials have assisted Parsons by maneuvering zoning rules and ordinances in his favor so the track can operate.
“They up and changed the zoning ordinance to say race tracks no longer needs special use permits. Then the BZA allowed us to come before them, and they said well there’s nothing we can do. The ordinance has been changed,” says Leighty.
Every county official WTWO reached out to either declined to comment, or was told not to by the Daviess County Attorney, Grant Swartzentruber, who reached out to WTWO.
“I understand why they’re upset. I get it. I wouldn’t like it either,” says Swartzentruber.
Swartzentruber calls this a private matter between neighbors.
“It’s a local piece of legislation. You know what I mean? And so, essentially up to this point everybody that’s making legislation has agreed that it’s to be one way, and I understand why they don’t like it. I get it, but it kinda is what it is,” says Swartzentruber.
As for now, the residents don’t have regulation on their sides.
“There was not an intent to regulate race tracks, and there is still not an intent to regulate race tracks,” says Swartzentruber.
Swartzentruber says Parsons is not violating any laws, but that there may be some legitimacy to Leighty’s claims, including the track owner holding races before he had a permit.
The county commissioners are holding a special meeting April 12th at 6pm, where residents can voice their concerns on this matter.