In November, the county discussed plans to rebuild Tom Roberts Road and soften the curve at the intersection of Alligator Point Road and Tom Roberts Road as a matter of public safety.
At the Dec. 5 county meeting, County Coordinator Michael Morón informed the board that he received a letter from Ron Mowrey, of the Mowrey Law Firm, representing the Alligator Point Water Management District.
According to the correspondence, Tom Roberts Road is the property of the water management district (APWMD), and not Franklin County.
“This is to ensure you are aware we have water lines under both (Tom Roberts and Alligator Point Roads) and care should be taken not to invade the district property without approval from the water district,” Mowrey wrote. “We will be happy to work with you in this matter.”
The letter also requests support from the county for expansion of APWMD but no new boundaries for the district are specified.
County Attorney Michael Shuler told commissioners the county has an option of condemning the property and seizing it to make repairs to the road.
“If it’s a public need, you’ve got to do what you’ve got to do,” Commissioner Cheryl Sanders said.
Former County Planner Alan Pierce said that even if the property were condemned, the county must pay fair market value for the land. He said the county does not currently have funds for the purchase.
Chairman Smokey Parrish said the land should be surveyed to determine ownership before any further steps are taken.
Commissioner voted unanimously to table the discussion until a survey can be completed.