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Former employee living on Pulaski property evicted after 40 years

Gary Martin, a former Town of Pulaski employee, could lose his home on town property after 40...
Gary Martin, a former Town of Pulaski employee, could lose his home on town property after 40 years.(WDBJ7)
Published: Feb. 9, 2021 at 12:28 PM EST
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PULASKI, Va. (WDBJ) - A former Town of Pulaski employee whose manufactured home has been on town property 40 years will move in the wake of eviction proceedings.

According to a town release, Gary Martin has agreed to vacate and remove his residence from Pulaski-owned property.

A hearing was held in Pulaski County General District Court February 3, 2021, regarding an Unlawful Detainer proceeding filed by the town in January. Martin indicated he did not want to oppose the process by the town, and was in the process of buying a local piece of property to move his home.

There will be another hearing in March, when the court will review steps taken by Martin to “ensure a timely resolution to the matter. It is expected Mr. Martin will own the new property and be able to share a preliminary, if not final, date scheduled for the transport of his manufactured home by that time,” according to the town release.

The land issue went to council after someone filed a complaint about how badly the tennis courts at Macgill Park had been maintained. After Interim Town Manager Darlene Burcham went out to look at them, she learned there was a house in the middle of the 10-acre property, which Martin has called home for 40 years.

Martin said he and a former head of public works had an agreement that he could live on the land if he looked after and maintained it.

“It was in the contract that when I retire I either move or try to make a deal to buy the land,” Martin said.

This contract is the only sort of paperwork the town said it has been able to find after Martin produced it for them. Leadership said that deal expired when Martin retired at the end of 2015, so they sent him a letter to relocate in 30 days.

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