It seems inconceivable that Madison County would spend $400,000 on a 10-foot-high, 2,600-foot-long concrete wall to buffer Ashton Park from Galleria Parkway and I-55.

This ought to be criminal.

Since when did Madison County get in the business of providing noise abatement and security for subdivisions?

One lone supervisor objected, saying that developers agreed to build a buffer for Ashton Park and should be responsible instead of county taxpayers.

But we completely understand the plight of the homeowners. They were apparently led to believe there would be a barrier and there is not.

But that's what civil lawsuits are made of. It's not the government's responsibility in this case to provide noise abatement and security.

The one dissenting supervisor, D.I. Smith of District 3, cited an existing agreement with the Parkway East Public Improvement District for developers to build a 50-foot buffer between Ashton Park and the road.

"To do otherwise is inconsistent with established legal and business principles and sends a dangerous signal that may be interpreted as, 'agree to anything, the [supervisors] won't hold us responsible for our agreements!'" Smith said in a statement.

District 1 Supervisor John Bell Crosby said the residents deserved the wall. "The safety issue is very important," he said.

What else do Madison countians deserve?

Certainly no one deserves a $400,000 wall at taxpayer expense.