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Oak Park gas station owner banned from operating 24 hours, files lawsuit, secures injunction to block ordinance – Chicago Tribune

A group of Oak Park gas station owners had been asked to shut down by village ordinance 24 hours after a Cook County judge issued a temporary injunction after the group filed a lawsuit. However, for now I have been given a grace period.

On September 19, the village board approved a ban on gas stations in town from operating past midnight. The ordinance began late at night in response to reports of criminal activity, including the shooting of an 18-year-old Oak Park and River Forest High School alumnus in June at her 24-hour gas station on Chicago Avenue. It is prohibited to operate until 5:00 am.

The new law resulted in a civil lawsuit filed in Cook County Circuit Court on September 27 by the owners of seven gas stations, including eight all-night gas stations operating in Oak Park.

The gas stations involved in the lawsuit are located at 7140 Roosevelt Road, 727 Harlem Avenue, 100 Chicago Avenue, 330 Chicago Avenue, 6129 W. North Avenue, 520 S. Austin Boulevard, and 1 Harrison Street.

The gas station owner then sought, and received on Sept. 29, a temporary injunction from Cook County Circuit Court Judge Neil Cohen to prevent the new law from being implemented.

“We represent a group of minority-owned gas stations and this closure puts them out of business,” the group’s attorney, John Ellis, told Pioneer Press. Everything, every fuel supply contract, is all dependent on staying open 24 hours a day.These are companies that have survived the pandemic, serving critical frontline workers during the pandemic. They survived, but coming out and doing this forced closure will only devastate them.”

Trustees and residents who have long supported the previous closure also mentioned other violent crimes that occurred outside the all-night gas station. It said there were 18 violent crimes at gas stations in the village between 10pm and 6am, 13 of which occurred between 10pm and 6am.

At both the village board meeting and lawsuits before the ordinance’s vote, gas station owners said Oak Park’s new law was excessive and could cut 15% to 35% of the station’s total sales. claimed.

In addition, gas station owners noted that the law could put their contracts with fuel suppliers under contractual requirements mandating 24-hour operation at risk. Also, according to the lawsuit, they claimed the data provided by the village did not address crimes in other overnight businesses.

Neither village attorney Paul Stefanides nor village mayor Vicky Scamman responded to repeated requests for comment on the lawsuit.

Gas station owners have proposed a series of voluntary mitigation measures to the village as a way to combat concerns about understaffed police stations at night, Ellis said.

“We’d love to see additional police present at our station overnight, but to see how that works, we need our own private security,” Ellis said. We will take voluntary measures to (have)

Goldsborough is a freelance reporter.

https://www.chicagotribune.com/suburbs/oak-park/ct-oak-oak-park-gas-stations-lawsuit-tl-1020-20221019-dvf7y5gegvhepohpnl2raa4wge-story.html#ed=rss_www.chicagotribune.com/arcio/rss/category/news/ Oak Park gas station owner banned from operating 24 hours, files lawsuit, secures injunction to block ordinance – Chicago Tribune

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