Pike County supervisors considered requests Tuesday for help with road and creek erosion issues — one on Robert Street east of Magnolia, the other on Topisaw Creek.
Vernell Felder said he lives on a portion of Robert Street that was apparently left off the county road register when it was drawn up in 2000.
The county road map shows all of Robert Street as public, but the register lists only half of it.
Felder said his culvert is washed out and presents a danger of collapse, especially during rain.
“All I’m asking you to do is fix that culvert now,” he said.
Deputy road superintendent William Simmons said Robert Street and Beck Street run parallel. While they’re the same length on the map, only half of Robert Street is listed on the register, even though the whole street was apparently built by the county.
Both roads are gravel and about two-tenths of a mile.
“We can only do what’s on the register,” Simmons said. “Legally we can’t go back there unless it’s changed on the register.”
“I think it would be reasonable to amend (the register) and put the culvert in,” said Supervisor Sam Hall.
Simmons said if so, the road crew would have to clean out the ditches and install a culvert to bring it back to standard.
Supervisor Lee Fortenberry expressed concerns that residents will take this as a precedent for getting their driveways worked.
Board attorney Wayne Dowdy said the difference is that the entirety of Robert Street was apparently built as a county road.
“Probably when the register was done in 2000, that piece of road was omitted,” said board president Robert Accardo. “(It was) inadvertently left off the register.”
Supervisors voted to amend the register to add the rest of the street, and Hall said he will go look at it and help get the necessary paperwork together.
Topisaw Creek erosion
In another matter, Accardo said Beck Troutman, who lives on Topisaw Creek, asked for help with a severe erosion problem.
Accardo said the creek has eroded to within feet of Troutman’s house.
“His house is probably one good flood from collapsing into the creek,” Accardo said.
Troutman can get help from the U.S. Natural Resource Conservation Service but needs the project to go through the board of supervisors, Accardo said.
NRCS will pay 75% of the cost, and supervisors would pay 25% but be reimbursed by Troutman.
Dowdy said supervisors have done the same thing in the past, including an NRCS project in the Donna Heights subdivision.
But Hall objected.
“I have a problem,” he said. “This affects only one individual on their personal property. I think we open up a can of worms. I just don’t think the county should get involved with a single property owner to solve a problem like that.”
Bowsky said such projects should help “under-served communities.”
“If you’re going to do that for one, you have to do that for all,” he argued.
As for Donna Heights, “that was a subdivision. That’s a different situation,” Bowsky said.
Their concerns were overridden when Fortenberry offered a motion to apply for the funds, Jake Gazzo seconded and Accardo agreed. Bowsky and Hall opposed, so the motion passed on a 3-2 vote.