UPDATE: Confusion about who owns storm drain causing problems fo - WNEM TV 5

UPDATE: Confusion about who owns storm drain causing problems for residents

Posted: Updated:
(Source: WNEM) (Source: WNEM)
BANGOR TOWNSHIP, MI (WNEM) -

Neighbors claim a storm drain along a local residential road is virtually worthless, leaving the roadway flooded and crumbling more each day.

Joyce Schwab said it is terrible living on Leff Lane, a small private road in Bay County's Bangor Township.

"The drain on Wheeler Road is plugged and when it rains it comes across our road and washes it out," Schwab said.

Residents said excess water leaves potholes in its wake.

"It's all bumps. You can't drive fast, you have to drive really slow," said Crystal Whittaker, resident.

She said Leff Lane is an access road for a nearby mobile home park. She would like to see Leff Lane become a public street.

"The owner should just sell it or give it to the county because it needs to be maintained," Whittaker said.

For her part, Schwab said living on a private road or not she deserves a maintained street just like every other taxpayer.

"I don't think it's very fair being a resident of Bangor Township, nothing is being done as far as the drain," Schwab said.

The person who maintains the catch basin is a bit of a mystery. TV5 reached out to the owner of Leff Lane and he said he is not the one responsible for taking care of the catch basin.

TV5 also reached out to the folks at Bangor Township Hall. They said to contact the Bay County Drain Commission. The commissioner said it was the Bay County Road Commission that owned the catch basin.

"We can't use public dollars for private property work so it will be the responsibility of the owner to have that fixed," Bay County Road Commission Manager Jim Lillo said.

Lillo said he has no doubt about who owns the catch basin.

"Being that it's part of a private road, that is the owner's responsibility to take care of and maintain that," Lillo said.

The owner of Leff Lane insists the catch basin is not his responsibility. He said if he can be convinced by the Bay County Road Commission the catch basin is his, then he is willing to fix it.

"All I got to do is that line is probably filled with dirt from 30 or 40 years you know. So they just come in with one of the big trucks like the city has got there and suck it out," he said.

Lillo and the owner said they will meet on Monday to resolve the issue.

"If he wants to run out there and look at it again, we'll talk about it," the owner of Leff Lane said.

As for Lillo, he said as long as water isn't running over nearby Wheeler Road - a public street - he won't tell the owner to fix the issue. He said he will keep an eye on the situation.

"We'll monitor it," Lillo said.

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