Boat Ramp Leads to Controversy

By: Bryan Anderson Email
By: Bryan Anderson Email

SNEADS, FL 1/27/2012 --

There's a growing controversy over a boat ramp in Jackson County. County commissioners reopened it to the public, after the landowner blocked access.

Boaters and fishermen in Jackson County once again have access to a boat ramp off Gadsden Trail in Sneads that leads to the Apalachicola River.

Crews had to clear a barricade Wednesday from the road leading to it put up by the landowner.

"The public's always had access to that," said Jackson County Road and Bridge Superintendent Al Green.

Green said it's been that way since 1977. That's when the county approached the old port authority, offering to build and maintain the ramp, as well as oversee the upkeep of Gadsden Trail.

"By prescriptive right, we feel like the public still and should have that access going in and out of there," said Green.

But current landowner Richard Hull seemed to think differently. Green said Hull told county commissioners there was criminal activity taking place at the site, so a few weeks ago he put up the blockade to prevent any access.

"He felt like the property was his, he owned it, he had the deed to it and that that wasn't an issue, the prescriptive right thing," said Green.

The blockade is down for now, but the issue may ultimately end up in front of a judge, and county commissioners set up an executive session next month to discuss possible legal action.


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  • by Property on Jan 30, 2012 at 09:35 AM
    Private property is private, public is public, and easements are a grey area. Lawyers get to interpret the grey area.
  • by terrt Location: jefferson on Jan 27, 2012 at 08:18 PM
    good the county has more money than the owner. when i get hurt i will sue you tax payers.
  • by Jefferson County Resident Location: Malloys Landing on Jan 27, 2012 at 07:50 PM
    We had a similar incident in Jefferson County last year where the IDIOT County Commissioners decided to close a public boat ramp(at the request of a greedy family) that had been used and maintained with taxpayer money for well over a hundred years. The person that had the ramp closed was supposed to give the residents another ramp as stated by the JCLDC but up to now has not come through on his side of the deal. This was expected by local people since they have witnessed this familys greed and their ability to always at least try and take any thing by any means possible. They even had the nerve to give the county a quit claim deed to a boat ramp that was owned by someone else to try and get away with this scam. One thing good that has come from this is the citizens had sense enough to vote one of the commissioners out last election and this year there should be 3 more replaced.
  • by Sigh on Jan 27, 2012 at 01:49 PM
    You are all wrong. It's not county government access but public access by the people. Since people have been allowed access for 30 years, they cannot be denied an easement under common law. The same situation exists at Lake Ella in Tallahassee. Part of the sidewalk is on private property but the public easement was already established. The city was not able to pave the part of the sidewalk on private property, nor maintain it, until the owner agreed, however. But the owner could not deny the public's right to walk on the easement simply by right of ownership.
  • by Christian Location: Tallahassee on Jan 27, 2012 at 12:28 PM
    He bought the property. The county must present written evidence of any agreement concerning the property and that evidence is required before the property can change ownership. If that agreement isn't addressed in the recorded sales document it never happened.
  • by agree but.. Location: Tallahassee on Jan 27, 2012 at 12:10 PM
    I think he has the right to close the landing. It is on his property. He owns it, he makes the decisions. If the deal was that the county maintains it, and they didnt hold up their end of the deal, then he should close it. But im not shocked. Almost all boat landings in the area are like this. it is awful. here are some examples, Millers landing- trash every where, people tear it up bogging. Rohden Cove- people tear it up bogging, not much trash, but lots of drug deals, crimes, and fights. Hopkins Landing- tons of trash, it is nasty. Hopkins landing is much like this one, it is on plantation property, but the plantation keeps it open because the county agrees to "maintain" it. Gardner Road landing- probebly has not been touched by a maintainence crew since the 90's. Faulk landing- torn up by trucks. Bull Headly- torn up by trucks, trash everywhere. Its terrible. Just look around. This is everywhere
    • reply
      by Yankee on Jan 30, 2012 at 08:59 PM in reply to agree but..
      Welcome to Leon County. Why do you act surprised?
  • by SUNSHINE on Jan 27, 2012 at 11:50 AM
    IF HE HAS THE DEED TO THE PROPERTY WHO IS THE COUNTY TO SAY HE HAS TO LET PEOPLE ON IT. WOULD THE COUNTY COMM. LET YOU GO ON THERE PROPERTY WE KNOW THAT WOULD NOT HAPPEN. LEAVE MR. HULL ALONE HE IS IN THE RIGHT I WOULD NOT LET YOU ON MY PRIVATE PROPERTY. TIME FOR PEOPLE TO STAND UP FOR WHAT IS RIGHT.HE WOULD BE LIEABLE FOR EVERYONE ON HIS LAND AND YES HE COULD BE SUED IF SOMEONE FELL AND BROKE A LEG OR GOT HURT IN ANYWAY.
  • by The County WILL Lose on Jan 27, 2012 at 11:39 AM
    Florida law is pretty specsif when it comes to property owned by individuals. Unless the County can prove they have an easement or ownership of the property they likely will lose their battle.
  • by concerned citizen Location: jackson county on Jan 27, 2012 at 11:28 AM
    there where people partying, trashing, mud riding, throwing deer carcass's out side of the road until the road was blocked never have seen county cleaning up anything.can't blame the owner for protecting what is his
    • reply
      by concerned citezen on Jan 27, 2012 at 04:01 PM in reply to concerned citizen
      amazingly trash was cleaned up AFTER wctv was there filming this morning
  • by Ben Location: Tallahassee on Jan 27, 2012 at 10:43 AM
    If someone gets killed down there I am sure he will get sued too.
    • reply
      by john on Jan 27, 2012 at 11:00 AM in reply to Ben
      No he wouldn't be sued.
      • reply
        by Ben on Jan 27, 2012 at 11:24 AM in reply to john
        He might not be liable but he most likely would be sued.
      • reply
        by Roz on Jan 27, 2012 at 11:37 AM in reply to john
        You are wrong. He is the first one they would sue.
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