January 18, 2010 DRAFT LETTER
- County Approval of Forced Annexations: The county commissions should review and vote on forced annexations. They represent both the municipalities and the annexation victims. They also know the needs of the overall community and would provide annexation victims a voice. Regarding a voice, municipalities oppose a vote and the citizens want a vote. It is hard to imagine a more perfect compromise than having a representative voice through the county commissions.
- Vote: A simple majority vote of the annexed property owners should be required.
- Financial Obligation of Water and Sewer Infrastructure: Forcing annexed property owners to pay for the infrastructure necessary for services they never even wanted or needed may be one of the most egregious and devastating aspects of the annexation law. Costs imposed on property owners can exceed $20,000—for many property owners, these costs may be the difference between keeping their homes and losing them.
- Municipalities initiate the annexations and therefore should be financially responsible for water and sewer infrastructure. Citizens should pay for reasonable tap fees only if they choose to connect to the system.