PARAGOULD, AR (KAIT) – Greene County Judge Jerry Shipman told Region 8 News Wednesday he is in disagreement with FEMA over some county road issues.
According to Shipman, clay, sand and silt binders, which hold county roads together, washed away during the flooding in June of this year. According to Shipman, FEMA has told the county that they cannot prove this year's flood washed the materials away.
"We're standing in a sample of what the flood caused," said Shipman.
Shipman showed our cameras some of what he called flood damage. He said some parts of the road were washed out, while others were slightly damaged.
"Close to 900 miles was all affected. 600 miles was really heavily damaged," said Shipman.
Earlier this year, Shipman told Region 8 News that if all assessments were correct, the county could have an estimated 7-million dollars worth of flood damage.
"If we would be successful in getting our assessments right, we would have $7-million worth of damage," Shipman said in an interview with Region 8 News in June. "That's what we're giving a lot of effort to is getting it assessed properly so we can review the proper funds to restore our roads back to pre-flood."
Wednesday, Shipman said problems still exist on his roads.
"The binder, the binding materials, the clays and the silts and the sands has traveled on (down stream)," said Shipman.
According to Shipman, he is also concerned with the lack of substantial rock in some county roads. The weight of the rocks on gravel roads carries the weight of vehicles. He hopes those problems are corrected before winter.
"Our vehicles will not be able to travel because they will not have the base material to support their tire tracks and so we'll have failures all over the county because of the flood," said Shipman.
Shipman said he's also got a problem with ditches off of county roads being blocked by gravel. He said he wasn't sure of the cost to remove the material from ditches.
"We have more areas where the binders, silts have filled the ditches and the field silt and debris has filled the ditches, so we have a lot of ditches also," said Shipman. "We have contacted civil engineers to do the proofing, to present it as is. Do some sampling of the roads and just do the proofing."
"Up until the last month, they were satisfied with our assessments, then five months later they come in here for the validation, but to me, in place of doing the validation, they're doing the assessment now," said Shipman. "They questioned if the flood caused this rock flow, and there are no rocks in the land behind us. It shows that clear water comes through."