The Herald Bulletin

Morning Update

Local News

March 16, 2013

Council members: Annexation failure could foster cooperation

Mayor’s proposal seen as costly, divisive

ANDERSON, Ind. — In the end, there was probably little chance Mayor Kevin Smith’s expansive Anderson Fast Forward annexation proposals would be approved.

They were large, complex, costly and controversial from the outset.

The goal of Anderson Fast Forward, which Smith unveiled early last month, was to stabilize Anderson’s population and property tax base and create an economic development corridor by capturing unincorporated frontage along I-69 to the Madison/Hamilton County line.

Opposition to both proposals developed swiftly and was vocal. Faced with an angry crowd of opponents last month when it first considered the plans, the City Council tabled a vote to introduce the resolutions and fiscal plans that would have formally started the annexation process.

Thursday night, the City Council rejected both plans.

“I just didn’t feel it was in the best interests of the people of Anderson,” said Ollie Dixon, D-District 4.

“I didn’t want to get into stretching out into Lapel.”

And certainly the people who lived in Stoney Creek and Green Townships, didn’t want to be considered part of Anderson, a view that was pointedly expressed at two Anderson City Council sessions and public meetings in the affected southwest townships and in Lapel.

Dixon said he would have been able to support a much smaller and focused annexation, but was told there was no room for compromise. “We were told it was an all or nothing proposition,” Dixon said.

The proposed northeast annexation would have absorbed about four square miles in Union and Richland townships and added 2,900 to Anderson’s population, including 1,163 homes, five businesses and 25 miles of roads to the city.

The southwest annexation would have extended Anderson’s city limits to the Hamilton County line, positioning it to take advantage of commercial, industrial and residential growth moving north from Indianapolis, Fishers and Noblesville.

City Council President David Eicks, D-At Large, said he proposed a much smaller “strip” annexation from County Road 700 South to the county line as a way of capturing the economic development potential of Interstate 69.

He said Tax Increment Financing District money could be used to develop the roads and infrastructure to make that area more attractive to potential commercial and industrial developers.

He also believes the city could have worked more cooperatively with officials in both Pendleton and Lapel.

“I truly believe the governments need to sit down and work together to do what’s best for all the citizens of Madison County.”

Although property between Anderson and the county line is still largely rural, Eicks said, it won’t stay that way as growth and development continues to push north from Fishers and Noblesville.

“Do I see a lot more of that land being developed in the future? I certainly do,” Eicks said.

Eicks said that after the dust settles from the Anderson Fast Forward battle, leaders from Anderson, Pendleton and Lapel can meet to discuss mutually acceptable economic development options.

Find Stu Hirsch on Facebook and @StuHirsch on Twitter, or call 640-4861.

1
Text Only
Local News
  • NWS - HB01006 - snow storm - JC 59a FEMA approves disaster aid for 19 counties

    After initially rejecting Indiana's request for federal aid following a brutal winter, the Federal Emergency Management Agency approved disaster relief on Tuesday.

    April 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • Parents speak out about mother coaching baseball after gun incident

    A decision by the Brooklyn Little League to keep a mother who pulled a gun out during a school meeting on the league as a coach and board member has resulted in some parents taking sides on the issue.

    April 23, 2014

  • NWS - HB0420 - Ellks - JC 2a Rezoning approved for Elks Lodge building With no objections from surrounding property owners, the former Elks Lodge at 1803 Broadway has been rezoned for a planned banquet hall and catering service.

    April 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • NWS-HB0423-Primary Election Treasurer Rep-Micah Mitchell Incumbent challenged by first-time candidate

    Kelly Gaskill says she's made numerous improvements in the operation of the Madison County treasurer's office since taking the helm in 2011. But her Republican challenger in the May 6 primary, Micah Mitchell, doesn't shy away from criticizing how Gaskill has run the office.

    April 23, 2014 2 Photos

  • NWS - HB0423 - Symphony for Kids - JC 31a.jpg Symphony for Kids draws Anderson-area students

    Nearly 1,000 fifth- and sixth-grade students attended the Anderson Symphony Orchestra's performance Tuesday during the annual Symphony for Kids concert at the Paramount Theatre.

    April 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • Arrest Log: April 23 Arrests made by Madison County law enforcement on Monday and Tuesday, based on Madison County Jail records.

    April 23, 2014

  • FEA HB0423 Food Truckin' logo Food Truckin' Thursday returns ANDERSON -- A new favorite that combines food and cars is rolling back into town next week. Food Truckin' Thursday starts back up May 1. For about six months, local vendors will pull up their food trucks to Citizens Park Plaza at Ninth and Main stree

    April 23, 2014 2 Photos

  • Tigers nip Argylls in girls track meet ALEXANDRIA -- Kelsey Crisp had a trio of firsts and a second place finish and her Alexandria Tigers needed every one of those as they nipped Madison-Grant 61-60 in a girls dual track meet here Tuesday. Crisp won the 100, the 400 and the long jump and

    April 23, 2014

  • Saturday auction fundraiser for Misty Eads On Saturday, a fundraiser auction will be held at Florida Station Church of God, 1045 W. 375N, for Misty Eads who has a rare kidney artery disease called polyarteritis nodosa that requires a kidney transplant.

    April 23, 2014

  • What's Where: April 23 Local meetings and activities are scheduled Wednesday.

    April 23, 2014

March Staff Photos


Buy and browse more photos from The Herald Bulletin

More Resources from The Herald Bulletin
Auto Industry Book
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
Facebook