Problems with the road in their subdivision have left a few Camdenton residents feeling left out in the cold. The subdivision is located within city limits, but its sole street — Clint Ave. — has not been accepted by the Board of Aldermen. The residents want to have a street in good condition that is maintained by the city.
Huge potholes mar the short street of the cul-de-sac neighborhood. Both homeowners and city officials speculate the potholes are likely due to an inadequate base below the asphalt. While the homeowners want the city's help with their road, the City Administrator Brenda Coulter says the street is not eligible to be considered for dedication to the city because Clint Ave. does not meet specifications - made obvious by the massive potholes and spreading of the asphalt. By city policy, developers must wait a year after hard surfacing a street before they can petition the city for acceptance of the new road. During that time period, the developer is responsible for maintaining the road. At the time of a petition, the city public works director inspects the road to make sure it meets city codes. Clint Ave. has never made it that far. The developer has not petitioned the city, according to Coulter. Some drainage work has been done on the road, but nothing has been done to the roadway to try to bring it up to pass the inspection, she says. Local developer John Williams who built the subdivision through Shadow Oaks Development Co. LLC has been contacted by the city "numerous times" to do something about the situation, says Coulter, but nothing is ever done despite assurances to the contrary. Williams is reputedly having financial problems, according to subdivision residents.
Mick and Judy Carlson moved off the lake to the new subdivision about four years ago. Within a few months, Betty Grady moved there from her farm in Montreal, Mo. She was among the last buyers. In an agreement with the homeowners, Williams was to pave the road as soon as the lots were all sold, according to Mick. In addition to his new home, Mick purchased the last lot to expedite getting the roadway completed. Two years ago in June, Clint Ave. was blacktopped. At first it seemed to be holding up. But after the first winter and beyond, the road began to break up with potholes. Many of the bad spots seem to be where the trash truck stops in front of each home, says Mick. It is possible to bottom out in front of Grady's home - and it has happened, she says. In places, the street has widened where the asphalt has been pushed out and large dips create valleys across the roadway. Meanwhile when it snowed this winter, the subdivision residents were left to their own devices to get the street cleared.
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The residents have been to city council meetings at least twice to seek help, but officials offered no assistance or guidance as to how they could get the situation straightened out, says Judy. Even suggestions for what the residents could do on their own would be welcome, says Mick. On the city's side, their capability to take on such problems is limited. Their general budget is supported by sales tax. There is no property tax collected by the city. Still, the Carlsons and Grady say they feel the city owes them some kind of help as citizens of Camdenton. "We want the road fixed. This isn't our fault. I think it should be up to John Williams, or the city or even the company that did the asphalt to fix it. There ought to be some resolution," says Judy. The situation has given the Carlsons a bad taste for the city. "I am not a good ambassador for this community now," says Mick.