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Nelson residents grill board over five-year road repair plan

— The Aug. 8 Nelson Town Board meeting got a little heated when discussion turned to the town’s five-year plan for repairing roads, specifically work on Jones and Chaphe roads.

Highway Superintendent Jack Sevier explained that the town’s budget for road improvements would cover the expenses for paving approximately 1 mile of the 2.2-mile-long Jones Road, which has suffered from major flooding, a broken pipe and a 20-foot deep hole.

“Chaphe Hill is actually on my list after Jones,” Sevier said. “The upper part of Chaphe has pretty much been ready.”

Sharon Diamond, a resident on Chaphe Hill Road who attended the meeting, jumped in.

“Why would you start with the upper part when everybody lives on the lower part?” she asked. “That’s the part that’s dangerous.”

“Because it’s ready,” Sevier responded, explaining that the lower part cannot be paved yet because it is not wide enough and does not meet state mandates.

“We’ve owned the land for 24 years, and we have been told since we bought the land, ‘You’re in the five-year plan,’” Diamond said. “Five-year plans have come and gone, come and gone, come and gone, and still nothing has been done.”

Sevier explained that the five-year plan Diamond was referring to dealt with resurfacing the roads, and not with redoing their structure.

Chaphe Hill Road has been resurfaced twice, Sharon’s husband Marty Diamond added, noting that the coating lasted about one month on each occasion.

Another resident asked if it was possible to defer Jones Road repairs for another year in order to take care of Chaphe Hill Road.

“Chaphe Hill is not even wide enough for two cars,” he said. “It’s a dangerous road.”

Town Councilor John Laubscher said that the immediate plan is to restore the road back to how it was before the storm, but Marty Diamond wasn’t satisfied.

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