Silvis city council agrees to cut down on number of car lots

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SILVIS, Illinois - The Silvis city council voted to cut down the number of used car dealerships in the downtown, as part of an effort to attract more retail business to the area.

Ninos Motors is one of the nine used car dealerships along the main drag in downtown. The city wants to cut that number down.

"Its going to hurt a bunch of us. It seems like they`re just trying keep the big guys here," said Rick Ninos.

Ninos opened his business almost 20 years ago and was hoping to pass it down to his son, but under the new ordinance that might not be possible.

"My son that's all he knows how to do. He`s 31 years old, he`s been helping me since he was 18 and at one time I hope I can pass it on to him," said Ninos.

The ordinance says through attrition the city wants to go from nine used car dealerships to five.

The city says they hope the less dealerships will attract more retail downtown.

A survey taken by residents three years ago showed their biggest problem with the downtown is too many car lots.

"Lets bring people downtown again," said Mayor Tom Conrad.

Once an owner wants to retire or sell their business anyone wanting to buy and keep it as a used dealership would have to go before city council and get a license approved.