The Putnam County commissioners met to talk about Road 5 and in the end voted to pass a resolution that will allow them to expand the road. The resolution passed by a 2-1 vote with commissioner Travis Jerwers the lone no vote. "It's kind of disgusting. People are not being kept in the loop. People accuse me of being against economic development. No, you have to have a fair balance between economic development and home owners rights." said commissioner Jerwers.
Residents of Road 5, along with their attorneys, upset with the decision and voiced their concerns. They say that the resolution should have been on the table a long time ago and that it is being passed after the fact. Once they were given time to voice their concerns residents hammered the commissioners with questions about how the process was handled. Marilyn Horstman, a Road 5 resident, said "I think they have an agenda. They don't care. They know they're wrong. I think they expect that we'll sue. I think they plan to settle, but they plan to plow through and do what they want even though they're wrong."
Road 5 resident Bob Patrick said "I haven't found much yet that you could be pleased with as far as the presentation the commissioners have made and how they've gone at this. It's a really disappointing situation." Commissioners John Love and Vince Schroeder voted yes on the resolution and say widening road five from 20 feet to 24 feet comes down to one thing, safety. "We're trying to abide the things that will make things safer and we feel as though this is the process by which to do that." said commissioner Love.
Attorney for Road 5 residents, Matthew Cunningham, said "it sounds like widening the road is going to probably increase more problems as far and won't decrease safety but will make it more dangerous."
Many residents with property on Road 5 oppose the widening. Worried for their own safety and say their voice is being ignored. "I think it's a sad day when they don't listen to people, there's a crowd of people that they don't even acknowledge them. I don't think they're doing their due diligence" said Horstman. There will be a final public hearing held at the courthouse on Friday July 27th at one in the afternoon.