(12/29) Though not scientific, a poll conducted by Mayor Martin Burns at a
special meeting held to discuss a possible annexation into town showed a
definite opinion split between town and county residents who were present.
Each of the 13 county residents in attendance was against the project, with
most of them living near the Myers farm. Of the 25 town residents who signed
the poll, 19 were for it, three were against it, and two were undecided.
During the meeting at the town office on Dec. 13, Burns gave attendees a
handout showing what he saw as the pros and cons of the project. Among the pros
and cons, Burns listed were:
- $9.2 million worth of tax- and rate-saving proffers
- Large retail store and office spaces
- New jobs
- Increase in available housing (both single family and townhouses)
- 35 houses per year not starting until 2009
- Increased tax base
- Increased traffic
- Increased population
- Increase in school capacity
- Decrease in scenic vistas
- Increase in potential maintenance costs and labor
The goal of the meeting was to gauge residents' opinions about the
annexation proposal now that Hudson Land, LLC has not only made an annexation
request but also offered incentives for the annexation.
Though the meeting was designed to gather resident input, about a third of
the 38 people who attended live outside the town limits. The town will also
continue to solicit input from residents on their opinions about the
annexations. Interested residents can either add their opinion to the poll at
the town office or call one of the commissioners.
Burns asked the group to consider all aspects of the decision. Although the
town stands to gain about $4.4 million in various town impact fees and another
$2.6 million in various incentives, he said, "Money isn't everything, but is a
serious aspect to consider. …You also have to consider small town quality of
However, the money would pay for some major capital projects for the town,
including the completion of the sewer repair, which is expected to be around $5
According to the handout given residents, Burns wrote, the town has a
current capital budget of $1.4 million (excluding electric). With the amount of
money being offered for this annexation, "the town can keep rates and taxes
lower, and provide years' worth of additional capital projects at no cost to
- Raymond Buchheister contributed to this article.