Community wants help
Published 11:24 am Wednesday, July 20, 2005
Drugs, trash, speed causing problems in Springhill Community
By MARY-ALLISON LANCASTER Managing editor
While most residents are sweeping their community problems under the doormat, several members of the Springhill Community are speaking out and addressing that within their community lies a major drug problem.
Two residents from the Springhill Community, who are not afraid of "bad press," addressed county commissioners Monday in an attempt to seek their help to alleviate drug activity that has arisen in the community located east of Ridge Road, directly outside the East Brewton city limits.
Bad press, meaning, once a neighborhood is stigmatized as having a drug problem, situations typically get worse, Miller said.
Miller, Rev. McCreary and Sheriff Grover Smith recently met to discuss the drug situation in the community. Miller said that Smith told him that his department was aware of the problem in the community, but because there is no money in the budget for daily drug routines, the best Smith could do is send out a unit once a day or once a week to patrol the area.
Financial resources are limited and the county tries to put as much money into the sheriff's fund as they can by applying for numerous grants throughout the fiscal year.
However, Miller said that there has got to be a better response. Despite drug helicopters patrolling the area, Miller said that everybody knows that nothing's being done.
McCreary told commissioners that "guys are dealing on the church yard and grounds," and leaving beer bottles in the yard. Often, McCreary said, he has been unable to get out of his church driveway.
McCreary says he's not a violent person, but he would protect himself and his neighborhood if it came down to it, as would several other members of the community.
Moreover, the roadways are becoming crowded with high-speed motorists and trash has been strategically thrown in both men's yards.
It's not just two men griping about an isolated incident, it's becoming worse throughout the community and Miller and McCreary were speaking on behalf of the concerned citizens in the Springhill Community.
The two ministers even said that they had considered incorporating the community so they could take matters into their own hands and not have to wait on the sheriff and Drug Task Force to control the situation.