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October 23, 2013

Sunset Avenue problem sparks heated exchanges

Commissioner, mayor disagree on solution



Howard said he and some city employees had already been working on fixing her driveway, and they had plans drawn by an engineer to install new drains and replace the pervious concrete at the end of the driveway with a standard concrete. Maupin said she was unaware of the plan and none of the city employees contacted her about it.

Maupin asked the commission to replace her driveway and sidewalk so that they were returned to their original state. Additionally, she wanted the bill for cleaning her basement paid to avoid a lien being placed on her house.

Barnes then attempted to stop the conversation, saying no facts support Maupin’s contention that the city should pay the bill.

“I think we’re putting the city at risk if we allow everybody to respond of their own will and then bring us a bill,” Barnes said. “I know she’s got a problem. I disagree with her on the fact that we caused the problem.”

He said he relies on department heads for information, and what they are saying is different from what Maupin claims.

At that point, Maupin left the council chambers in tears before returning a few minutes later.

City Attorney Garrett Fowles said that, because of the number of different contractors involved in the project, getting the issue resolved will be a difficult process. He advised Maupin to “lawyer up.”

“Miss Maupin, from what I can tell, is not going to be able to resolve this problem on her own, and a lawyer can sort these things out and will sort these things out,” Fowles said. “It will probably happen much more quickly than it has so far once a lawyer gets involved.”

But Maupin said she cannot afford a lawyer, and she feels bullied by the city.

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