Roads, Incorporated is a contracting company that does frequent work for Escambia County, including road construction and debris removal. Owned by Cody Rawson, the business is headquartered out of 106 Stone Boulevard in Cantonment.
In April 2007, Roads, Inc. came under fire for digging a borrow pit in the Knollwood neighborhood of Cantonment. Rawson claimed that the pit, which began construction in early 2006, would eventually be converted to a catfish pond.
Residents of the neighborhood have complained that the unfenced pit is a danger to children; that work at the site is loud and stirs up dust; and that County Administrator George Touart has ignored violations because of his relationships with the company:
- His son Matt is an employee of the company.
- He allegedly has gone on "repeated hunting trips with Roads Inc. principals."
- He hired G. Thomas Smith as his attorney in a personal real estate transaction a few months after Smith served as County magistrate in a Roads, Inc. hearing.
Touart, who was accused of inappropriate conflicts of interest in other County deals around the same time, removed himself from the Roads, Inc. investigation in July 2007 because of his son's employment by the company.
WEAR reporter Greg Neumann filed several reports citing county officials who promised to close the pit, although their deadlines have shifted several times. The most recent deadline, February 1, 2008, was given an apparent exemption by Assistant County Administrator Robert McLaughlin: "I do understand that there may be delays and I would like for you to periodically update me so we can discuss a time extension."
- www.roadsinc.com - Official site