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County attorney: Two properties left to resolve for Morgantown Road project

 

NATCHEZ — Approximately 15 years after the inception of a project to make Morgantown Road safer, Adams County officials said they are nearing the last leg of the lengthy legal journey.

Adams County Attorney Scott Slover said only two properties remain at odds with the Morgantown Road project: CVS Pharmacy, located on the corner of Morgantown and U.S. 61, and one privately owned residence.

The scope of the $1 million road project includes widening, resurfacing striping and digging drainage ditches along the entire stretch of road, which requires permission from each of more than 60 property owners for the county to purchase one-tenth to two-tenths of an acre on either side.

The county announced recently that all but the remaining two property owners have reached an agreement with the county, Slover said.

A hearing is schedule for May 13 to determine if the county’s pursuit for the remaining two properties on Morgantown Road is a fair and just cause, Slover said, and if the court rules in the county’s favor, the property owners can make a case on what their piece of land is worth.

“If all goes as planned, I should be able to write a letter to Jim Marlow (County Engineer) saying we’ve obtained all of the rights-of-way that we need,” Slover said.

The project began within a few years after the death of an 18-year-old crossing guard Casey Schrock, who was killed at the intersection of Morgantown and Booker roads in 2001.

“Everywhere I go, people want to know what is going on with Morgantown,” said District 4 Supervisor Rickey Gray. “We’ve been wrestling with this project since before I was elected. If we have some citizens in this community that don’t want to cooperate, given that Morgantown is one of the most dangerous areas in the county whenever it rains, I really think the citizens that live and drive there ought to be able to know who these people are so they can make some phone calls to them and help us out. … This project is going to save lives.”