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Adams County couple wants road abandonment

NATCHEZ — A local couple continued their cause Monday to have a portion of an Adams County road that passes through their property abandoned by the county.

John and Rosa Seyfarth brought the issue of Mount Airy Plantation Road’s acceptance into the county road system — and their request to remove part of it — to the board of supervisors at its last meeting, and Monday they returned.

“I don’t want it to be a public road because I don’t want every Tom, Dick and Harry having access to my property,” John Seyfarth said.

The road was accepted into the county system more than a decade ago, when the state mandated counties codify an official list of roads for maintenance, Supervisors’ President Darryl Grennell said.

At the time, Mount  Airy Plantation Road was included in the officially advertised list of roads, and has been in the county’s road inventory since the public hearing in which that list was discussed. Rosa Seyfarth said she was not aware the road was in the county system until two weeks ago, when she saw a mail truck traveling on the property.

Though the county road crew maintained the road during intervening years between the adoption and the mail truck sighting, the Seyfarths did not see the maintenance happen because they do not live on the property in question, John Seyfarth said.

At the time the road was adopted into the county system, the Seyfarths’ attention was consumed by a family medical situation that had them sleeping out-of-town, Rosa said, and they never received notice the road was up for adoption.

“We feel our civil rights have been violated as tax-paying citizens,” she said.

Adams County Board of Supervisors Attorney Scott Slover said the board that oversaw the adoption process was not required to notify individual property owners about the adoption, but was required to give public notice, a process that was followed.

Though the Seyfarths have petitioned for a portion of the road to be abandoned by the county, other landowners on the road have objected to the abandonment request, tying the county board’s hands, Slover said.

John Seyfarth said only one landowner has property behind the Seyfarth property, and he has a written right-of-way through the Seyfarth land even without public road access.

John Seyfarth said the county should have never started maintaining the road, which it did before its official adoption into the road system at the request of residents at one end.

Though that may have been the case, Slover said, the current board had nothing to do with it.

John Seyfarth said he would consider contacting the state attorney general’s office about the matter, which Slover said he was welcome to do if he thought it would bring resolution to the issue.

In other news:

• The supervisors adopted a resolution proclaiming Monday as Natchez High School Lady Bulldogs Day in honor of the NHS women team’s 54-51 win over South Jones High School for the 5A basketball state championship.

• The supervisors voted to allow South Mississippi Electric Power Association — a broader network of which Southwest Mississippi Electric Power Association is a part — to construct a communications tower near Martin Luther King Jr. Road.

• The board heard from Michael Walker with AT&T, who was seeking approval from the board to allow AT&T to offer a video service similar to cable television in Adams County.

The service will be available wherever AT&T offers land line service, Walker said. The board deferred further action until it had a chance to review its contract with CableOne to make the AT&T agreement did not conflict with it.