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Six feet of land in Millville turns into roadblock for families, city council

September 27th, 2009 Posted in Opinion

By Cassidee Cline

MILLVILLE — City council members postponed a decision to waive the dedication of 6 feet on a subdividing property Thursday.

Linda and LaMont Mathews own property at 474 North Main and requested to subdivide their property so their daughter’s family could build a home.

Mayor Mike Johnson said the ordinance states that any subdivision made requires at least 6 feet of property to be dedicated to the city for a roadway. The city ordinance requires at least 66 feet for a right of way for 450 to 550 North Main so traffic can turn right or go all the way through. Currently the roadway only has an available 60 feet.

“It isn’t a big deal,” Johnson said

Linda Mathews, who wants the subdivided property for her daughter to build a home, on disagrees.

“You have something and you can’t even give it to your kids,” she said, “that doesn’t make sense.”

The Mathews gave a deed to the Rhechsteiners for a piece of property next to the their house, but the ordinance said there is only one house per parcel of land. Johnson said if they wanted to build a house on that piece of the land, they have to subdivide to do so.

Cindy Rechsteiner, Mathew’s daughter, told the council they won’t give up the 6 feet of property in order to subdivide. “We just won’t build.”

Regardless of how the council votes, Mathews said, her daughter will still get the land. “It’s in our will that my daughter gets the land,” she said.

Mathews said the property that her husband owns has been in the family for 200 years. She said her father-in-law, LeGrand Mathews, dedicated 60 feet of property about 2 years ago and her husband is strongly against giving up any more to the city.

“Something from the heart has turned into a war,” Mathews said.

The decision whether to waive the property dedication has been pushed back to the next council meeting on Oct. 8.

“I didn’t know this would be such a stressful thing, and we won’t ever do this again” Mathews said. “We’ll see what happens on the 8th.”

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