Supervisors delay vote on littered property

Published 5:00 am Tuesday, April 19, 2005

Whether a man’s personal property in Bogue Chitto is an illegaldump or simply a nuisance to neighbors is a decision the countyboard of supervisors has postponed, pending further research.

Ronnie Durr, the Lincoln County solid waste coordinator,approached supervisors during their regular board meeting Monday todiscuss the property of Ronald Norris on Railroad Avenue in BogueChitto. He requested the board meet with Norris again to discussthe property or allow him to enforce a county ordinance againstillegal dumps.

The property is swamped with scrap iron and junk cars and posesa nuisance to neighbors, Durr said.

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Durr said he had been trying to work with Norris for the pastfour years with little result.

“He does have a problem, and it’s not going away,” Durr said.”There’s been no effort in four years that I can see to try to makeamends to neighbors or to improve the situation.”

Norris admitted his property looked bad but denied that Durr hadbeen talking to him about it for four years.

“I let it get out of hand once before and cleaned it up,” Norrissaid. “He hasn’t been around since then until now when it’s got outof hand again. If they’ll give me a few weeks, I’ll have thiscleaned up.”

Norris, 64, said he is disabled and lives on Social Securitysupplemented by the sale of junk iron and cars he rebuilds. Peopleare always leaving scrap iron in the yard for him because they knowhe needs the help, he said, and “sometimes I let it get ahead ofme.”

Norris said Durr last came by last Thursday or Friday and he haddone considerable work since then to clean up the property. Norrissaid he has two large trailers he had been filling over theweekend. One is half-loaded, he said, and the other has aboutthree-quarters of a ton of scrap iron.

“I’ve been cleaning for the last several days. I’m hurtingmyself every day out there doing it. It’s getting cleaned up,” hesaid.

Norris said he is also taking steps to correct what manyconsider an eyesore, but he is a poor man and it takes time. Hesaid he had built a garage from scrap iron brought to him and is inthe process of putting in a concrete floor.

“Once I get that finished, I’ll put the stuff in there,” hesaid. “Once I get done with that, I’ll also have a fence at theback of the lot and move those cars back there.”

And they are not junk cars, Norris said. He said each car has atag, title and insurance.

“I fix them up and resell them,” he said.

In addition, Norris said, he will be posting a sign requestingpeople no longer drop off their junk without consulting with himfirst.

“A lot of people just do it trying to help,” he said. “They knowwhat I do, and they know I need the money.”

The board Monday postponed making a decision about the propertyuntil they could research the litter ordinance and examine theiroptions.