MARSHALL COUNTY, Ala. (WHNT) – There’s a dispute over who should maintain a Marshall County rural road, and now the county commission is seeking advice from the state attorney general.
Shin Point Road in Marshall County stretches for about half a mile of gravel and dirt, up the side of a mountain. It’s in such poor condition that locals say even the emergency services won’t use it.
“It’s dangerous. And I would hate to see something terrible happen before they act on our road,” says Sue Vanderberg who lives on Shin Point Road.
Sue Vanderberg says the road is a daily concern for more than 20 people who live there.
“We don’t have mail, we don’t have emergency services, we don’t have garbage collection, and it’s just basic human rights that we don’t get and we’re still paying taxes,” says Vanderberg.
County officials say a court ruling declared the road a private road in the 1990s. But residents of Shin Point believe that if the county accepted the road into inventory, then the county could help maintain it.
“If you look at our plots, none of our properties cross the road. So if we don’t own it, who does? said Sue Vanderberg.
Vanderberg says most people who live on Shin Point Road have fixed incomes and cannot afford even the bare minimum of maintenance, which includes the frequent addition of chert to ruts and ridges.
“Every time it rains, our road washes out. It erodes small streams down the center. Every rocky bed starts to surface, which scrapes the bottom of our vehicles. We always have to do maintenance on our vehicles, tires Vanderberg explains.
The road is in better condition than when News 19 visited nearly a year ago. Vanderberg says it’s because neighbors got together to deposit chert themselves. She says their county commissioner helped secure the company to deliver the chert.
“Most of the people who live on this road are on a fixed income. They are veterans, disabled, elderly, and it is expensive. It’s $300 a load of chert and it’s just chert. You know there’s still a lot to do,” says Vanderberg.
Vanderberg says that for the first time in years, residents of Shin Point think things are looking up.
“I feel hopeful and excited that they wanted to write to the attorney general on our behalf to see what they can do,” Vanderberg says.
Although it has been an ongoing battle for people who live in the shin point, they say they hope the attorney general will give an opinion in their favor.
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