“I’m not going to lie; we had a car for a guy who has to have it done and is leaving today,” Aidan Barton said. “We had an agreement on it and it was not in our plans. So yeah, we did work late. It’s not going to be an all-the-time thing. Actually, after today we’ll no longer be doing it. We’ll be done at 5 o’clock and get back to doing what we talked about with the borough a month ago. But we have been full force. I’ve had everyone working on this one vehicle just to get it done.”
Neighbors referred to it as Barton’s Auto Body shop, but the business actually is called Phoenix Garage. It’s related to Barton Automotive Refinishing on Route 217; Barton said his wife owns Phoenix Garage.
“So I do apologize that we worked late and we had to come in on weekends,” he said. “But we do come in on weekends to work on the building itself, not just working. It’s one of the only times we can get the building redone because that was part of the agreement, that we would make it look good and presentable as well.”
Barton said borough manager Evans had earlier approached him about the neighbors’ concerns about the operations, and that he explained to Evans that the project wasn’t going as planned.
“There were times that we had to use the air tools when we stayed late, and yeah, it was a lot louder than I wanted it to be the last month,” Barton said. Although workers came in early, they never used pneumatic equipment before 9 a.m.
Barton said he is as ready as everyone for business to return to normal.
“Trust me, when 4 o’clock hits, 5 o’clock — I’m ready to go home.”
At the council meeting, Evans agreed with the neighbors that the late hours were in conflict with the conditions that the planning commission and council had allowed.
“Some of the things they are doing are violating what we said they tentatively could do. They promised to go nine to five Monday through Friday and occasionally on weekends.