Residents of Hernando say they’re losing their land to erosion. They say despite their continued efforts, drainage and erosion problems aren’t getting fixed.
Hernando officials admit there are problems that need to be addressed sooner than later, and say they’re working to find solutions, but it hasn’t been easy. They say there’s only so much they can do. It all depends on who owns the property from where the problems begin.
“The first thing we gotta look at is who is responsible. Yes, the city does carry some liability and responsibility. Not always,” said Hernando Mayor Tom Ferguson.
“People need to be aware of what they’re purchasing,” said Hernando Alderman Mike McLendon.
Hernando, Mississippi, started rapidly growing in the 1990’s. Homes were being built before regulations were in place.
“At times we were relying on developers and they missed some things. So, we’re paying for it now,” said McLendon.
Residents say new development and construction is causing drainage and erosion issues. Officials say they see it.
“The problem with these things getting bigger is we’ve got homes and it’s encroaching on the homes,” said McLendon. “There are three homes right now in Hernando that may not be here in seven years and that has to be addressed.”
Residents claim their concerns are falling on deaf ears. Officials say there’s only so much they can do.
“Some of these ditches are owned by the property owner,” said Mayor Ferguson. “Some are controlled by the Corps of Engineers. Some places we have deep water easement where, yes, we can work on some of those. Not all these ditches can be worked on.”
“It has to be addressed by the Hernando board of aldermen. It has to be addressed by the supervisors, state legislature and senate with the infrastructure issues we have statewide. And also, by the federal government, the Corps of Engineers. We need help,” said McLendon.
The Mayor and Board of Aldermen say they’re looking into solutions but none of it is an easy fix. They encourage residents who are having drainage and erosion problems to contact city, state, and federal officials as many as times as it takes until something is done.