Friday, June 19, 2009

Millstream and Laurel Park Homeowners Get a Temporary Restraining Order Against The City of Greensboro on Annexation

The Villages at Millstream Homeowners Association along with the Laurel Park Homeowners Association have filed a temporary restraining order against the City of Greensboro for the purpose of delaying the annexation of their subdivisions to the City of Greensboro. Below the fold is the minutes from the April 7, 2009 Greensboro City Council meeting along with the second reading on April 21, 2009 where at the end of this month these subdivisions were going to have to start paying municipal taxes but with this temporary restraining order that might not be the case.

It looks like the homeowners are not playing because their lawyer from Wilmington N.C. James Eldridge CLICKHERE is very experienced in land use law in this state.

It was said that the City of Greensboro attorney's wanted the homeowners to put up a 2.5 million dollar bond but the judge reduced that amount to $5,000 which is reasonable.More to come on this issue and will try to get a copy of the temporary restraining order next week.

Here is the article from the Greensboro News & Record on this issue from Amanda Lehmert CLICKHERE

CLICKHERE to see the video on April 7th and 21st of 2009, or click on the title above

Mayor Johnson stated that this was the time and place set for a public hearing to consider an ordinance annexing territory to the corporate limits located at Whitehurst Village at Millstream, Hartwood Village at Millstream,
and Laurel Park on Millstream Road – 151.5 acres. (2008-9A) and that the item had been continued from April 1, 2008
with no further advertising.

After the Mayor stated that there were numerous speakers for the item, it was the consensus of Council to allow each speaker three minutes.

Mr. Hails provided the history of the annexation, stated that the petitions for annexation had been submitted by the developer in 1997, 1999 and 2000, that the area had city water and sewer and that the petitions remained legally
valid. Mr. Hails further stated that staff had been involved in meetings, phone calls and letters with citizens and that their main concerns were City services and public safety for the area.

Mayor Johnson asked if anyone wished to speak to the matter.

Lyle Cunningham, 1518 Bowmore Place, requested Council extend the delay of the annexation due to the
continued economic climate, spoke to the housing market, City budget deficit, and questioned the City’s ability to provide City services which would be required to be furnished as a result of the economic climate.

Ronald Powell, 5204 Winterale Court, spoke to the number of police officers currently available to provide public safety and requested a delay in the annexation.

Police Chief Bellamy stated that the Department had 58 officers assigned to the district and clarified that additional officers that would be in place prior to the effective date of the annexation.

Interim City Manager Morgan was requested to provide Council with information regarding city services for the area.

Ronald A. Due, 1514 Guiness Drive, spoke to the definition of annexation, forced annexation, the recession and requested Council not support the annexation.

Thomas Mellenger, 5224 Cragganmore Drive, stated the lack of notification to property owners for the April, 2008 meeting, an amendment allowing withdrawal of the annexation petition, current repairs necessary in the
neighborhood and that the County provided adequate services to the neighborhood.

Jay Riuz, represented by Kelly Holmes, 1520 Coverage Bridge Road, read Mr. Ruiz’s notes by stating that 30% of the families were unable to pay homeowners dues, spoke to the amount of proposed taxes, economic state of the
City, stimulus checks and requested a continuation.

Cindy Cohen, 5222 Cragganmore Drive, requested that the annexation be delayed for 5 to 10 years, spoke to the lack of City services that recently annexed neighborhoods had received, that the neighborhood was seven miles
away from the city and asked the Council to let the City grow out to the area prior to the annexation.

Charlena Bradley Banks, 5209 Winterale Court, spoke to the recession and the unstable economy, increase in taxes, lack of City facilities and asked about amenities that the neighborhood would receive as a result of the annexation.

Corey Johnson, 5206 Winterale Court, spoke to the loss of home values, the number of foreclosures in the neighborhood, the financing aspect of the housing market, asked Council to focus on stimulating the local economy and
requested a delay.

Charles Alexander, 5315 Minion Court, stated the impact that the annexation would have on his family, effective business management and the responsibility of Council to take care of citizens.

James Perkins, 5212 Cragganmore Drive, contested the procedural aspect of the annexation, stated that the property had changed hands since the original petition had been filed, allowance for the withdrawal of the petition.

Danielle Ray, 5427 Bradburn Drive, spoke to the financial burden the annexation would place on her family, lack of information regarding the proposed annexation provided to her when she purchased her home and requested Council’s postponement of the annexation.

Marcus Bass, 1601 E. Market Street, stated concerns of the homeowners in the terms of safety issues, police coverage for the area, increased taxes, and asked for a delay.

Kelly Holmes, 1520 Covered Wagon Road, spoke to the foreclosures in the neighborhood, the environment of the community, result of increased taxes in the neighborhood, City water and sewer services, police protection for the
area and the effects the annexation would have on the community.
Darian Smalls, 5231 Cragganmore Drive, spoke to the community atmosphere of the neighborhood, schools and the hardship the annexation would have on the residents.

Jim Penrod, 5405 Cragganmore Drive, provided a summary which included the neighborhood distance from the City, lack of services, lack of a community center, bus routes, libraries, parks, and bike trails, the inadequacy of the
current fire station, stated that the neighborhood was not included on the Parks & Recreation facility map and requested delay of the annexation.

Councilmember Bellamy-Small moved to close the public hearing. The motion was seconded by Councilmember Perkins and adopted by voice vote of Council.
Councilmember Wade made a motion to delay the annexation for a year. The motion was seconded by Councilmember Rakestraw. Council discussion ensued as to the authority to withdraw the annexation petition, the disservice to citizens that have already been annexed into the City, the delay of the annexation in April, 2008, economic challenges for all citizens
of Greensboro, the City’s responsibility to provide adequate services in a timely manner, and the possibility of delaying for another year.
The motion to delay for another year FAILED.
Councilmember Perkins moved adoption of the ordinance annexing territory to the corporate limits located at Whitehurst Village at Millstream, Hartwood Village at Millstream, and Laurel Park on Millstream Road – 151.5 acres.

The motion was seconded by Councilmember Wells; the ordinance received five affirmative votes on the FIRST READING on the following roll call vote: Ayes: Bellamy-Small, Groat, Matheny, Perkins and Wells. Noes: Barber,Johnson, Rakestraw and Wade.

The City Attorney stated that the ordinance required a vote of 6-3 on the FIRST
READING to be adopted and that the ordinance would be brought back for a SECOND READING at the April 21, 2008 regular meeting of Council.

Second Reading on April 21, 2008 was same votes as above.

Section 2. The owners agree to pay to the City of Greensboro an acreage fee of five hundred twenty five dollars ($525.00) per acre for water service and five hundred twenty five dollars ($525.00) per acre for sewer service immediately prior to the time of annexation. Any utility line assessments which may have been levied by the County shall be collected either by voluntary payment or through foreclosure of same by the City. Following annexation, the property annexed shall receive the same status regarding charges and rates as any other property located inside the corporate limits of the City of Greensboro

Section 3. The owners shall be fully responsible for extending water and sewer service to the property at said owners’ expense.

Section 4. From and after the effective date of annexation, the above described territory and its citizens and property shall be subject to all debts, laws, ordinances and regulations in force within the City and shall be entitled to the same privileges and benefits thereof, subject to the provisions in Sections 2 and 3 above.

Section 5. From and after June 30, 2009, the liability for municipal taxes for the 2009-10 fiscal year and thereafter shall be due annually on the same basis as any other property within the city limits.

Section 6. That this ordinance shall become effective on and after June 30, 2009.

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