MARSHALL COUNTY, Ala. (WHNT) — There’s a dispute over who should maintain a rural Marshall County road, and now the county commission is looking to get the state attorney general’s opinion.
Shin Point Road in Marshall County is about a half-mile stretch of gravel and dirt, up the side of a mountain. It’s in such bad shape, that residents say not even emergency services will use it.
“It’s dangerous. And I would hate to see something terrible happen before they take action on our road,” says Sue Vanderberg who lives on Shin Point Road.
Sue Vanderberg says the road is an everyday concern for more than 20 people who live on it.
“We don’t have mail, we don’t have emergency services, we don’t have trash pickup, and it’s just basic human rights that we don’t get and we still pay taxes,” says Vanderberg.
County officials say a court ruling declared the road a private drive in the 90s. But Shin Point residents believe that if the county would accept the road into inventory, then the county could help maintain it.
“If you look at our plots of land, none of our property crosses the road. So if we don’t own it, who does?” says Sue Vanderberg.
Vanderberg says most people who live on shin point road are on fixed incomes and can not afford even the bare minimum of maintenance, which includes frequently adding chert to the ruts and ridges.
“Every time it rains our road washes out. It erodes little streams down the center. Every rock bed starts to surface which scrapes the bottom of our vehicles. We are always having to do maintenance to our vehicles, tire,” says Vanderberg.
The road is in better shape than when News 19 visited nearly a year ago. Vanderberg says that’s because neighbors just got together to put chert down themselves. She says their county commissioner did help secure the company to deliver the chert though.
“Most people that live on this road are on a fixed income. They are veterans, disabled, elderly, and it’s expensive. It’s $300 a load of chert and that’s just chert. You know there is so much more that needs to be done,” says Vanderberg.
Vanderberg says for the first time in years, residents on Shin Point believe things are looking up.
“I feel hopeful and excited they were willing to write the attorney general on our behalf to see what they can do,” says Vanderberg.
While this has been an ongoing battle for the people who live in shin point, they say they are hopeful the attorney general will give an opinion in their favor.