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Systematic Annexation considered by Wilmington model is Charlotte

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Wilmington City Council will consider following in Charlotte's footprints by doing, or at least considering, systematic annexation every two years. Every couple of years property somewhere around the county will be considered for annexation, doesn't mean it will happen every couple years, but will be considered. When people move into an area near the city, at least they know they may be considered for annexation in the near future. The model is what Charlotte uses now.

How is this working out for Charlotte? Does letting people know ahead of time make people more receptive, or does it just extend the period they fight it? Would like to here everyone's perspective, especially those from Charlotte.

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State law does not give people many avenues to stop a non-voluntary annexation. If an area qualifies under state law then a city can annex it. Annexation within Mecklenburg county is very complicated because Charlotte shares it with 6 other municipalities, there are agreed to spheres of influence, EJT zoning control (that may be unique to Meck), surrounding counties attempting to annex into Mecklenburg and of course part of the city stops at the SC state line.

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Wilmington's proposal is to go in two year cycles, odd number years identify areas for annexation, and even number years in depth reports, public hearings, and adoption would take place.

Wilmington has three close municipal neighbors, Wrightsville Beach, which it shares a border now, and Leland and Belville, which are not that far away, but are in another county. Are there any state laws regarding municipalities crossing county lines?

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.... Are there any state laws regarding municipalities crossing county lines?

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Along with Mecklenburg, the ETJ/Spheres of Influence agreements also exist in Wake, though the municipalities in Wake otherwise have followed a different policy in annexations. The various cities in Mecklenburg have negotiated some agreements with adjoining towns over county lines (Stallings, Weddington and Harrisburg, specifically), so some very small annexations in those areas could cross a county line, but only to keep a neighborhood unified within a single municipal jurisdiction.

I think this would be a good move for Wilmington, given the vast unincorporated sprawl beyond the city limits. The city would be able to get a handle on growth and planning issues without biting off more than they can chew, and would avoid the kinds of political fallout that followed Fayetteville's massive annexations a few years back. The provision of services to newly annexed areas can be more efficiently managed this way, and new residents of a given area would know what they were buying into well ahead of the actual annexation. When Charlotte and the Meck towns moved towards spheres of influence, they did undertake some degree of outreach - making people aware, and if Wilmington expects the idea to work, they will need to do the same.

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