2019-01-30 / Front Page

City annexation on hold

The city’s annexation proposal announced in December ran into problems in Atlanta and has been put on hold, Mayor Anthony Howard told the News Monday.

The City Council approved a resolution at a special meeting Dec. 19 enabling the city to request Representative Gerald Greene and Senator Dean Burke to present local legislation providing for annexation of some properties contiguous to the city limits.

The proposed annexation included strips of land to the north, west and south of the existing city limits.

“The problem was discovered when Rep. Greene’s legal staff asked for the legal description of the City Limits of Blakely,” Howard stated. “The document could not be produced and without it the proposed local legislation could not move forward.”

The City Council plans to discuss their options at the March Meeting.

Requests for the door-to-door garbage pickup, the city’s fiber Internet service and city water were among the factors leading to the proposed annexation. The city has already extended water lines outside the city limits to serve several residential areas.

The annexation would also provide enhanced police protection and could possibily lead to improved ISO ratings.

However, there was considerable push back to the proposed annexation, especially from owners of the agricultural properties which would have been annexed.

A number of homeowners in the area to be annexed also expressed a desire to remain outside the city.

The downside for property owners in the proposed annexation area would be the 4.5 mills of city ad valorem taxes.

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