16th section mess owned by JPS - WLBT.com - Jackson, MS

16th section mess owned by JPS

16th section mess owned by JPS

Source: WLBT Source: WLBT
JACKSON, MS (WLBT) - Tires, twigs, tree trunks, and trash. It's what every motorist along I-55 Northbound Frontage Road approaching Gallatin Street will see.

The trash is on 16th section land, owned by Jackson Public Schools. Some say it's an embarrassment.

"It's a place for vagrants to hang out, break into the local businesses, which they do quite regularly," says Steve Gambrell, owner of Animal Health Products.

Gambrell says vehicles have been broken into outside his shop, which is close to the garbage pile, and his business has also been burglarized.

"We've called several times," he tells us. "Call the city and they come out here and do a little bit of cursory cleanup, then it's right back. No one patrols to stop from dumping or anything like that." 
Charles Hamilton manages DCS Truck Parts, another nearby business. He believes an unsightly mess like this will prevent Jackson from building its tax base.
"It's just a big pile of trash and somebody needs to pick it up," said Hamilton. "I mean who would want to move in next door to it?"

3 On Your Side visited the property back in 2010, when Lavon Gressett leased it for a mobile home park. At that time, $48,000 in back taxes was owed on the land. We've learned Gressett left without ever paying up. 
Jackson Public Schools provided this statement: 

"The land is currently unleased. The property was originally leased to Lavon Gressett but was canceled due to default of required payments by the leasee. However, the District is seeking to clear the debris as soon as possible and will pursue methods to block the property from being accessible to the general public."

JPS did not mention how they plan to block the property from the public.

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