Q Our town contracted for sewer improvements, and a private drive was damaged in the process. Repair to the damaged areas was by overlay, and now the undamaged portion of the private drive is a different color than the newly-asphalted section. The landowner has requested the city to seal the undamaged portions so as to match the re-paved, repaired portions. Would this sealing be a legal expenditure for the town?

A There is no specific authority which would permit a municipality to “seal a private drive” merely on request of a private landowner. If a “claim” is made with the municipality for alleged damage, a municipality is authorized under Section 25-1-47(2) to settle a claim for damages. In such settlement, the municipality may agree to compensate the private landowner or make the repairs itself, as long as the landowner does not receive compensation which exceeds the actual assessed damage nor receives a better quality driveway than what he had before the damage occurred. (Attorney General’s Opinion to Logan, December 13, 2013)