Roselle, NJ (CBSNewYork) – Some Union County Residents say they’ve been digging around about who is responsible for maintaining an old railroad that runs behind their homes.
Lori Sexton shows CBS2’s Meg Baker around her mother’s property on Columbus Avenue in Roselle. Their yards are manicured, but beyond the property boundaries, grass and weeds grow high above neighbors’ fences, attracting bugs and animals.
“You can’t even have a picnic in the backyard because the critters usually show up here at night,” Sexton said.
The overgrown area covers an old railway line. The tracks can be seen from 9th Avenue.
“If it’s not running, you need to clean it up,” Sexton said.
She says she calls every year, trying to figure out who is responsible. The local Public Works Department has trimmed some acreage, but the county’s neighboring DPW site is also in poor condition.
“It was a hot mess, as you can see… The trees were up. The tenant couldn’t even bring her car in because the fence was leaning,” Sexton said.
Sexton says she’s frustrated. She has repeatedly called and emailed officials about these issues.
Baker and Sexton have both tried calling the mayor and director of the DPW multiple times. The workers even told them someone was on their way, but they never showed up.
The New Jersey Department of Transportation responded later in the day, saying someone would be out to survey the property in the next two weeks.
The tracks were formerly the Staten Island Railroad, which NJDOT inherited.
The adjacent DPW site needs to be maintained by the DPW. No one from the county will speak to CBS2.