Roads remain icy as city and county dispute over ownership

City of Bauxite and Saline County disagree over what portions of Mt. Olive and W Sardis roads they're responsible for in terms of clearing ice.

BEAUXITE, Ark. (KATV) -- Whose road is it? That’s the question in Saline County and the City of Bauxite.

After a viewer called in with complaints of icy roads, Channel 7 paid said area a visit.

But it seems neither the city nor the county can agree on what portions of the roads each party is responsible for.

The area in question is the intersection of W Sardis and Mt. Olive roads. But the problem is that both roads overlap both city and county jurisdictions, making it unclear to residents on who to reach out to regarding icy roads in need of being made safe.

“We put out graters and we have six plows with sanders. We’re out trying to blade the snow,” Saline County Road Superintendent Marty Polk explained, referring to the 1,100 roads the county is responsible for.

“Mt. Olive and West Sardis; that is in the city limits of Bauxite, the City of Bauxite,” Polk went on to explain.

But according to a map in Chief of Police Jamie Barlow’s office, a good portion of Mt. Olive Road happens to be, in fact, within the county. Be that as it may, however, Polk does insist that the county will service roads under the city’s jurisdiction:

“If we are going out in the county doing work on our roads out there on the way, if we see something that needs to be touched on as a safety feature to the citizens, we will either blade it or try to put some sand on it,” Polk said.

But Channel 7 only hit a wall when we reached out to the City of Bauxite. When we spoke to a man with the roads department by the name of Mitchell, he hung up on us. We tried calling Mitchell back several times, but were only directed to a full voicemail box.

Channel 7 crews then visited City Hall (which also happens to house the police department) in an effort to contact Mitchell.

Police said Mitchell had left for the day.

But during the visit, Chief of Police Jamie Barlow explained with his map that the county does indeed possess most of Mt. Olive Road, and that the city treats certain areas of West Sardis Road within city limits.

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