Property owners have noticed that the county was taking up to 75 feet of land from county roads and 40 feet from township roads.
Tonight they had the change to ask county commissioners about the policy.
Commissioners say the footage is taken for road improvement, but land owners want to know why there’s no notification or compensation?
Shelly Weppler/Ward County Commissioner: “What I understand, and I’m on the planning commission, is that rural folks are unhappy with the easements that are being required when a subdivision of property is occurring.”
(Daren Brown/Des Lacs) “I don’t think they should have the right to take our property. In the homestead act we are required to give them access- for the public to give them access, but we’re not required to give it.
The 33 feet is not their land in the first place it’s an easement, and that’s the way it should stay.”
(Brown) “Basically they had this 75 feet along the county road and then when I initially dedicated or plotted these two lots they took 66 feet.
Then when I plotted two more lots they made me bump that up to 80 feet of town ship right of way before they’d approve these two lots over here.
So basically I lost 155 feet here because my road has to go outside of the right of way that I had to give them for the county road.”
(John Pietsch/Ward County Farm Bureau) “If you own the property and if you want to grant somebody easement to do something with it, you should still be compensated for it.”
(Alan Walter/Ward County Commissioner) “These roads are built for you.
To haul your stuff to the markets, to the farm, they’re built for you.
County highways are built for everybody but the roads that are on the section lines of the townships are built for you so you can do your business.
So we’re just trying to make it safe.”
The Farm Bureau has taken a stance on the issue where they will push to see the county repeal it’s current method.
They are asking that land owners be compensated for the taken property or that it be given back.