Commission hopes to resolve issue regarding closure of County Road 352

Published 3:18 pm Thursday, May 14, 2015

The Chilton County Commission hopes to resolve an issue regarding the closure of County Road 352.

Commissioners voted on Monday to allow Commission Chairman Allen Caton and county attorney John Hollis Jackson the authority to speak on behalf of the commission and contact Williams-Transco Pipeline to seek a resolution to the problem.

An appointed resident of the area will also be included in the interaction. The commission closed the road after advertising the move, but residents said they didn’t know about the proposed closure because they don’t travel the road currently because a bridge is out.

But if the bridge were replaced, the residents said the road would take significant amounts of time out of their travel.

The road was vacated to Williams-Transco Pipeline, which owns adjoining property, six months ago, which would be past the amount of time when an appeal to the decision is allowed.

Larry Hayes, who has addressed commissioners at previous meetings on behalf of many residents who live near County Road 352, said he thought the commission’s decision was a positive one.

Commissioners also voted to advertise for the closing of the highway railroad crossing at County Road 233 and U.S. Highway 31.

Commissioners originally tabled a discussion regarding the closure at the April 27 meeting after Stephen Curlee with CSX Transportation requested the crossing be closed.

Curlee told commissioners in April he spoke with one individual who lives near the crossing and the individual was fine with it being closed, but there were two property owners across the property on County Road 29 who Curlee had not met with.

Commissioners thought it would be best to speak with the two property owners on County Road 29 before taking a vote to close the railroad crossing.

Curlee told commissioners if they decided to close the crossing, CSX could fund $7,500 toward the closure and ALDOT would match $7,500, meaning a $15,000 net for the county.

Commissioners thought the two property owners on County Road 29 should be made aware the crossing would be closed.

Caton said he knew both of the property owners and would contact them to let them know of the discussion regarding closing the railroad crossing.

On Monday, Caton said he spoke with the two property owners and they were fine with the crossing being closed.

Commissioners explained to Curlee, who was present at the meeting, that the standard procedure for a closure is to advertise that the area be closed before the commission takes a formal vote to close it.

If anyone objects to the crossing being closed, commissioners typically vote to keep it open.

In other news, the commission:

•Awarded a bid of $31,397.36 to purchase equipment for four vehicles for the sheriff’s department. The equipment includes cages, lights, sirens and radios. The money to purchase the equipment will come from the sheriff’s department selling older vehicles as surplus.

•Voted to allow Chilton County Tax Collector Tim Little to advertise and hire an assistant chief clerk to fill a vacancy in the Tax Collector’s Office. Commissioners Caton, Welch, Greg Moore, Agee, Joe Headley, Joseph Parnell voted in favor of the motion with Heedy Hayes voting against the measure.

•Voted to re-classify employees in the Chilton County Sheriff’s Department including Edwin Freeman to be a full-time deputy, Christopher Warren to transport duty and Vanessa Lawley to be with courthouse security.

•Voted to advertise and hire a full-time driver to replace a full-time driver leaving in the Chilton County Transit Department.

•Voted to allow Welch to solicit prices from a reputable general contractor for work to be done erecting playground equipment at Minooka Park.