GLOVERSVILLE - The city on Saturday refused to renew the vending permit for the operators of the Sno Kone Joe ice cream trucks who were charged last week with harassing competitor Mr. Ding-A-Ling, but Sno Kone Joe is fighting the decision in court.
Amanda C. Scott, 21, and Joshua V. Malatino, 34, both of 62 East Blvd., last week were charged with second-degree harassment, a violation, and fourth-degree stalking, a misdemeanor. Police said the two were trying to keep Mr. Ding-A-Ling from selling ice cream in the city.
Sno Kone Joe's permit was up for renewal Saturday, but Police Chief Donald VanDeusen recommended Mayor Dayton King not reissue the permit, and King told the city clerk not to renew it.
Joshua Malatino, in green shirt, stands outside the Sno Kone Joe truck he operates with Amanda Scott at Darling Field in Gloversville on Saturday.
The Leader-Herald/Bill Ackerbauer
The attorney for Scott, the owner of the Sno Kone Joe business, filed a lawsuit seeking to have a judge decide whether the city should allow the permit to be renewed.
According to state Supreme Court Law Clerk Charles Clark, state Supreme Court Judge Joseph Sise was to review the show- cause application today. The lawsuit was filed against the city, the city clerk, VanDeusen and King.
"They want to be shown cause why they should not be granted their permit," Clark said.
Malatino said Monday he is not the business owner and the permit is not in his name.
"Amanda is the business owner. It is her permit," he said.
He said Scott will continue to conduct business outside the city until the issue is resolved.
Malatino directed all additional questions to their lawyer, Bill Lorman of Amsterdam. Lorman didn't return phone calls seeking comment.
City peddling and soliciting licenses cost from $25 for one week and up to $650 for a year.
VanDeusen said his department is unable to comment further on the ice cream issue because of the civil litigation. He directed all questions to attorney Michael Albanese of Gloversville, who did not return a call seeking comment.
According to a news release from the police, Malatino and Scott harassed and stalked the Mr. Ding-A-Ling driver three times last month: April 16 on West Eighth Avenue, April 19 on Forest Street and Sunday on North Main Street.
The driver of the Mr. Ding-A-Ling truck, Phillip Hollister, 53, of Montgomery Street said Monday the Sno Kone Joe operators should have approached him to work out an informal agreement so the two could do business in the city.
He said he has an agreement with Joe's Snack Shack, another vendor.
"Him and I have worked out in an adult manner how to go about doing this without interfering with each other's business," Hollister said. "This could have been done in the beginning. I am new to this, but he has given me information as to where he is on certain days so we don't bump heads, and if we do meet, we will just head in different directions."
Hollister said the other vendor mentioned eventually doing business in the city.
"It is not like I own the town," Hollister said. "He is just being cordial about it, which is the way it should have been done."
He said he hasn't had any further incidents with Sno Kone Joe since the incidents in April.
Hollister said he plans to continue to sell ice cream in the city, but said the alleged harassment has hurt his business.
"Business has actually decreased since this whole thing," Hollister said. "It has been detrimental to the business."
Capt. John Sira said if Sno Kone Joe were found to be operating in the city without a valid permit, the operators could face a fine no less than $50 and no more than $250, and imprisonment not exceeding 15 days, or both.
Fulton County Planning Director James Mraz recently told county officials Malatino wants to conduct a free Fulton County "family fun day" at the airport from 11 a.m. to 10:30 p.m. Aug. 10.
However, Malatino said, considering the current legal issue in Gloversville, he is not sure if he will still organize the family fun day.
"I can't even comment on that right now. I have other problems to worry about right now before we even start to think about anything like that," Malatino said. "We are on national networks and trying to take this one step at a time. The truth will come out in the end."