By David Howell
WATER VALLEY – It’s been months since supervisors fielded a complaint during a board meeting about a road, but Monday’s meeting brought scrutiny from Calvin Schaefer about County Road 237 in District 4.
Schaefer said the road, located north of Hwy. 330 and east of I-55, is impassable and members of Pine Creek Lodge cannot access their lodge located at the end of the county road.
“We had a group who had to cancel Easter weekend because of road conditions,” Schaefer told supervisors. He added that the road was in rough shape even before the heavy rain this year and there are no road ditches to allow the water to drain properly.
“We pay our taxes every February. We have been paying since 1969 and we aren’t getting any progress on the road,” Schaefer continued, adding it is only a few bad spots that need the most attention.
District 4 Supervisor Timothy Booker addressed Schaefer’s complaint, explaining that his crew has been extremely busy with all of the recent rains. He also said last year his road crew hit a water line while trying to cut a road ditch and did not return.
“I will call 811 and get them to mark the water lines,” Schaefer added.
“It is Tim’s district, but if y’all are good with it, to go out there and meet together and get with the water association and work this out,” Board President Cayce Washington recommended.
“I don’t mind fixing it, but everything has to be worked within a budget. I can’t just say I can go out there and spend $10,000 when my whole district needs a lot of work. I know it has been raining, but I am trying to be as conservative as I can. I have to look at if from the whole county’s perspective and not just one area,” Booker said.
Booker cited an example, County Road 66, where Washington and a private landowner pitched in to help work on the road.
“They realized what I have to work with and they pitched in to help,” Booker said. “It’s not that I don’t care or am not concerned about it, it’s just trying to manage everything. I have three guys and sometimes I am short,” Booker continued, adding that he runs a three-man crew instead of four to save money for his depleted beat.
“I intended to get out there when you called before but my grader broke down” he added. “There is nothing I can do about that.”
“It is Mr. Booker’s district, but if he wants me to support him, I will get out there and help him with some of my equipment,” Washington added. “And I think if there is some water line issues, obviously we need to identify those,” he added.
“I understand it has been wet and I hadn’t pressured anybody to get it done. But a phone call goes a long ways. I have been promised twice,” Schaefer added. “Keep me informed with what is going one. I am just like y’all, I am on the board there and I have people calling me,” he explained about the lodge.
Discussion on the matter came to a close after Schaefer agreed to call 811 and get the water lines that run alongside the road marked.
“I will call them and then I will call you and tell you when they say they are going to flag,” Schaefer said.