Posted Online: Feb. 06, 2013, 9:16 pm
Hampton unsure if bridge public property
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By Sarah Ford email@example.com
HAMPTON — Mayor Kevin Irby said the village may know later this month whether the site of an old bridge was "vacated" to the Marina Villas at Safe Harbor development or remains public property.
The topic arose a month or so ago after some residents of the development complained people were trespassing on condo property to get to the riverfront in front of the condos to fish.
The village claims the site of the old bridge on 1st Avenue was vacated when the Safe Harbor development was created, so it's on private property.
Resident Clifford "Skip" McLaughlin said it's still public property and wants clarification of property lines.
Mayor Kevin Irby said village attorney Clayton Lee is researching the issue.
Trustee Richard Vershaw said the bridge over Wheeler's Creek, was "one of the older (bridges) of Rock Island County" and many years ago, there were plans to turn it into a lookout point, but it never happened.
"We'll get a ruling on what is vacated, and what is not vacated," Mayor Irby said. "We'll base our decision on what we've legally been told."
The mayor reminded Mr. McLaughlin fishermen have access to the section of riverfront in front of the condos by boat or on ice, but can't go through the yards of Safe Harbor residents.
In response to the trespassing issue, the board approved creatinga criminal trespass to land ordinance, since there wasn't one on the books. Fines were set at $50 for the first offense, $75 for the second and $100 for the third.
Police Chief Bob Fuller said Safe Harbor residents "need to post signs on gates and areas where people might enter or along the rock."
The board also approved spending $552 to buy a dozen flags for the Heritage Center.