Last updated: July 02. 2014 11:13PM - 1097 Views
By - rdupuis@timesleader.com

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WILKES-BARRE — Exeter Borough is asking a judge to reconsider a motion that would grant suspended borough police Sgt. Len Galli a new hearing for the presentation of additional evidence in a land-use dispute involving a proposed fitness center.

The borough’s motion was filed Wednesday in Luzerne County Court.

According to court paperwork:

• On June 13, Galli filed a notice of land-use appeal after the borough’s Zoning Hearing Board in May denied his request for a zoning variance to lease out a property on Roosevelt Street for use as a fitness center. Galli had previously operated a karate school in the building, and argued that the change was “insignificant.”

• The same day, county Judge Michael T. Vough issued an order granting Galli a motion to stay any further action by the borough while his appeal is pending. The judge also granted Galli’s request for a hearing to receive additional evidence on the appeal, scheduling the hearing for 9:30 a.m. Aug. 18.

Wednesday’s motion by the borough indicates that the board does not oppose the stay, but opposes the introduction of additional evidence.

“In this case, the board held a complete hearing on the matter,” the motion states.

“It is apparent that (Galli) had an opportunity to present evidence and was heard by the board,” it adds. “Nowhere in the notice of land use appeal does (Galli) deny same.”

As well, the borough argues Galli never presented a motion outlining the basis for introducing additional evidence, and the board therefore never had an opportunity to oppose that move.

Wednesday’s motion was filed by attorneys Donald G. Karpowich, Sean W. Logsdon and Kevin M. Walsh, on behalf of the board.

In an unrelated matter, Galli has been in the news in recent months after he was suspended and accused by borough officials of using his work computer for personal business, viewing pornography and setting up sexual encounters. The status of that case could not be immediately verified on Wednesday.

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