Mudslinging Over Muddy Road

The Daileyco Logging is run by a third generation logger,who is independent in nature.   It comes out when discussing a debate he's having with Nacogdoches County.   " This is a free country and no, I'm not going to ask when I an use this road or when I can go back to work. I don't work that way,"  said Ed Dailey on the edge of a tract of land where a large logging operation is underway.

But sometimes permit enforcement officers do. Dailey was issued several $200 tickets when log trucks carried mud onto the roadway. Permit enforcement officer, Deputy Jim Bentley points to a the video he recently shot. " This portion here, this is all tracked mud." The black topped road near Melrose had the appearance of a dirt road. The officer says safety was the concern.   There are reports that two cars went into the ditch due to the slippery road.    " There's a wet clay, a very greasy substance on top of a black top road which there's no traction. " The officer says he eventually pulled Dailey's permit and told him to shut down and not to operate until he was given permission.

Dailey sees it another way.    " We did shut down not because they said shut down, but because I shut it down." Dailey began cleaning up the mess. Dailey said, "We came out here with a motor grater of our own and scraped. We came out here with a wash truck and washed mud. And at one time it did get kinda slick at one point we put lime out all at our expense." Road administrator Doyle Williams agreed, " Yes, he did do, we thought, what he was supposed to do. " But Dailey refused to call for permission to go back to work. He resumed the logging on his own. This doesn't set well with enforcement.

Dailey claims the ordinance can't dictate when a person works, even though the county wants to interpret it that way. Dailey said,  " This industry and this business has to go to work. We have to keep working just like everyone else." Deputy Bentley said, " Theoretically they can continue to operate. All I have the authority to do is to go out there and tell them to stop and write them tickets if they continue. Under state law the permit ordinance is not an arrestable offense."

The debate will end up before a judge. In the meantime, Dailey has laid rock down on a new property access road and he intends to use it everyday that it's not raining, with noone's permission.