INDEPENDENCE, Mo. — A metro business is flooded with water and frustration after promises turned empty.
Fairmount Liquors has flooded eight times in nearly five years all because of a dispute about who’s responsible to fix a broken culvert.
Driving down 24 Highway between Independence and Sugar Creek, it’s become business as usual at Fairmount Liquors. Several times a month before heavy rain, they remove every item from the bottom shelves to prepare for possible flooding.
“I watch the weather every day, especially when it is supposed to rain, because I need to get things up,” owner Thelma Jordan said. “I cannot afford to lose stuff.”
As FOX4 previously reported, the flooding stems from a broken culvert in front of a local car lot. Jordan said no one is stepping up to fix the problem.
“We have Sugar Creek on one side, Independence on one side and MoDOT in between. But they are fighting over who is responsible and who is supposed to fix it,” Jordan said.
In May 2018, FOX4 reached out to both cities. An Independence spokesperson sent us a statement which said: “We are working to find solutions to hold the property owner and Sugar Creek responsible as this long-standing issue negatively impacts Independence residents and business owners.”
Nearly a year later, the city told us the “conversations continue with all parties involved.”
Last year, Sugar Creek’s mayor told us in a statement: “It is most unfortunate this situation continues, but the City of Sugar Creek maintains that this is a problem on private property. However, the City of Sugar Creek has met with MoDOT and the City of Independence within the past two months to determine how this flooding situation can be remedied for the benefit of all concerned.”
When we followed up, the mayor couldn’t comment.
The frustration has prompted Jordan to file a lawsuit. The problem is lawsuits can drag out for years. While she waits, it continues to rain.
“I have gone to meeting after meeting, and they say they are working on it,” Jordan said. “I want action. I want something done.”