Judge rules in Mabrys’ favor; city won’t appeal

In ruling that a Vandalia ordinance governing a 1988 boat dock agreement is unconstitutional, a judge has ruled that that city law cannot prohibit Steve and Latisha Mabry from operating a restaurant on Vandalia Lake.

Judge Michael McHaney granted a motion by the Mabrys' attorney, David Cates of Swansea, to declare that ordinance unconstitutional.

While the city has argued it has authority outside corporate limits because the lake is a city water source, due to a state statute related to pollution control, McHaney said, "At his deposition, Vandalia Mayor Rick Gottman admitted that the issue with the restaurant has nothing to do with pollution, rather that the property '… is not zoned for a restaurant or business. It's zoned single-family.'"

The city council voted unanimously on Monday night not to appeal the court ruling.

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