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Perdue won't block forced annexation changes

Posted June 10, 2012
Updated June 11, 2012

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— People who live in unincorporated areas will be able to vote to halt forced annexations under a bill that legislators approved earlier and that Gov. Beverly Perdue said Sunday she will neither sign nor veto. .

The bill becomes law if the governor doesn't sign it.

"I recognize the need for some changes in the annexation process," Perdue said in a statement given Sunday to the Associated Press. "But reform should neither stifle the natural growth nor limit the role of local governments."

The new bill that Perdue refused to sign was passed in response a court ruling in March that struck down a petition process approved in 2011 to block such annexations because only landowners participated, not all voters.

In the petition process, 60 percent of landowners in the area being annexed could block the move. The new law allows a traditional referendum requiring a simple majority vote.

House members gave final legislative approval to the bill two weeks ago by a vote of 72-45, a margin that indicates they probably could have overridden any Perdue veto. The Senate vote also appeared to make passage veto-proof.

Perdue had the option of signing the bill into law; vetoing it or letting it become law without her signature.

Supporters of the legislation argued that cities have abused their annexation power over the years, that property owners have a right to be protected from cities trying to expand their tax base and that people should be able to choose whether they live within a municipality.

"It's fair to all. You have a choice. You have freedom," said Ken Sorenson, a resident of the Dutchman Downs subdivision which is near Cary, Apex and Holly Springs.

Perdue urged legislators to reconsider the bill, saying it provides no alternatives for managing urban growth. Also, she said the new bill still might not address the constitutional issues raised with the bill that allowed a petition to block annexation.

"Legislators do so in a way that promotes fairness for all parties and follows the law, and they should adopt an approach that includes tangible tools and policies that provide for long-term sustainable growth for our cities and towns," Perdue said. "That objective is in all of our best interest and should be immune from partisanship."

The North Carolina League of Municipalities criticized the bill Sunday, saying its leaders support Perdue's stance on the issue.

"North Carolina's cities and towns are home to almost three-quarters of our jobs," league President Latimer Alexander said in a statement. "It is time for the General Assembly to work in true partnership with municipalities to focus on increasing these jobs and on growing our state's economy. This legislation does just the opposite. It hurts business, economic development and our taxpayers. The citizens we jointly represent deserve and expect better."

33 Comments

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  • jdupree Jun 11, 2012

    Great news. No more threat of slavery to pay city taxes for services I neither want or need w/o the option of having a vote! Bet this slows down Raleigh and Cary's spending on dumb projects!

  • rachel Jun 11, 2012

    If cities and towns are worth it, they will sustain themselves-forcefully annexing people to pump money into an area that is not self sustaining is robbery. No one should be forceably required to sustain an area they choose not to live in. We have to stop supporting entities which would not thrive without grabbed dollars. Entities are supposed to either thrive or die, as the case may be, based on their own merits-this forced annexation doesn't strike me as being far from the bank bailouts-which did nothing for the people-the whole change of events for people, small businesses, big businesses etc should be you either make it on your own or you don't-but no one bails you out with grabbed money the people have no say or vote on. We the people need to decide who to bail out and who to let drop, not the government-county,city or federal-its our dollars, we decide.

  • SailbadTheSinner Jun 11, 2012

    "North Carolina's cities and towns are home to almost three-quarters of our jobs…"

    Perhaps true, but only because in the past the cities have been allowed to annex the property of the plants that were nearby in the county.

    Maybe now the cities (like Cary) will be more inclined to offer us folks that are nearby in the county something more than increased taxes and more nit-picky regulations when they go for their next land-grab….

    STS

  • ICTrue Jun 11, 2012

    "" It's the GOP buying votes...ya, right."

    yep and you libertarians are lapping it up.....you've been suckered and you don't even know it." Tcheuchter

    Spoken like a true socialist.

  • beaupeep Jun 11, 2012

    If a city/town wants to annex an area, it should have to provide ALL city services to the residents, at their expense, BEFORE they collect a dime extra in taxes.

    Towns annex an area and then say you MUST pay thousands to hook up to sewer, water, etc. That ain't right.

  • babedan Jun 11, 2012

    To annex property and then charge those property owners Tens of thousands of dollars to hook up to city utilities is taxation without representation. As those being annexed had no vote in the board that annexed them. Unfortunately this will do nothing as those already in the city will probably vote to annex those being annexed anyway. Again these folks have no voice in the government forcing them into the cities.

  • Taxpayingcitizen Jun 11, 2012

    I live in between Apex and Cary in the County... I chose that location on purpose and would move before being annexed. You can keep your extra benefits, I'll keep my extra tax money!

  • wildpig777 Jun 11, 2012

    hahahha bev perdue knows full well she has no voice in this annexation reform.

  • Alex25 Jun 11, 2012

    This may come as a surprise to you but governments, all governments need money to operate. Just about the only way to raise money is through taxes. Or would you prefer they hire armed robbers to go around hitting convenience stores and such?
    ------------------------------------------------------------
    -----
    Doesn't matter how much money we 'give' to Govt...Govt will ALWAYS spend more then we give them.

    2nd - robbery?? In fact, voting in a liberal politician (Tax & Spend Dem for ex) simply results in legalized theft. AND it needs to stop.........................

  • Scubagirl Jun 11, 2012

    OK, perhaps I don't understand.....IF she were to sign this into law then I read it as folks would have a voice in annexation of their property or not. Conversely, if she VETOed it then the public would have NO SAY. Am I interpreting correctly?

    So IF I'm correct, then her vetoing this would be a bad thing but it seems many on here would like it to remain possible for govt to just annex without owner input.

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