Mead Township resident addresses officials | News, Sports, Jobs

ST. CLAIRSVILLE — A guest brought an issue in Mead Township before the Belmont County Board of Commissioners on Wednesday. Joyce Hartley of Cash Ridge Road, Shadayside said her property has been suffering damage she believes is related to roadwork near her property and the township trustees have not taken action.

“I am getting severe damage to my house,” she said, adding her taxes on the residence have also increased.

She said she believes negligence on the part of the trustees are to blame for the damage. She also said Belmont County Engineer Terry Lively has also not looked at the property which she said might be in his jurisdiction.

“None of you want anything to do with this,” she said. “My stuff’s getting damaged. My health is failing.”

Hartley said water was running through a ditch and under her property following roadwork.

Commissioner J.P. Dutton said he sympathized, but this was not the purview of the county.

“A lot of the issues that you’re bringing up unfortunately are not the jurisdiction of the Belmont County Commissioners. “It’s our understanding that a lot of this is a township issue. … Townships and counties are completely separate in terms of how they’re operating.”

Hartley said she was considering what could be termed an act of vandalism or property damage to find the source of the harm.

“The commissioners and the township’s going to make me commit a crime in order to expose it,” she said.

The conversation touched on other topics Dutton said was irrelevant to the topic, and a deputy providing courthouse security was called in. Hartley left without incident. She departed before she could be asked further questions.

Afterward, Lively said his office was not responsible for the roadwork.

“It was not something that the engineer’s office was involved in,” he said.

“We changed no ditch-line. The roadway is the same as it was before Gulfport redid the road for us, and now she claims we’ve diverted water onto her property,” Mead Township Trustee Clyde Hammond said, adding the work was completed about two years ago. “They changed no ditch-line, they put no pipes in.”

Hammond speculated water seeping onto her property could have come from a spring.

“Springs develop out in these hills, and we have no control over where the water goes,” he said.

Mead Township Trustee Ed Good said Gulfport Energy restored the road as part of a road use maintenance agreement. He said the oil and gas company designed and planned the work, not the township.

“It’s totally transparent. It is what it is,” he said.

In other matters, the commissioners are also preparing to transfer records from the current location at Oak View Road to a new facility. They authorized $13,000 for two shipping containers.

“That’s for the records department. That has to do with pulling the remaining records out of the rehabilitation building (off Hammond Road) that’s going to be torn down next year. The Oak View (Road) building where the records are is getting…fairly full.”

Dutton said the county is still in the process of selecting a prospective site for the future building. The Oak View Road building is close to 100 years old.

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