On Monday, August 5th, the Florence Town Council voted 6-0 to file blank annexation petitions for two annexation areas. The proposed annexation areas include Magic Ranch, Crestfield Manor, Wild Horse Estates and surrounding areas. The annexations, if finalized, would increase the Town’s boundaries by six square miles and increase the Town’s population by 4,300.
Both annexation areas are within the Town’s Planning Area per the voter-approved 2020 General Plan. Both areas have been previously identified as future suburban residential, commercial and employment growth areas that will benefit from municipal representation and services.
Town Manager Charles A. Montoya highlighted a few of the benefits for homeowners in the proposed annexation areas. “If the people living in the these areas are annexed by the Town, they will be receive dedicated fire service without a subscription fee, increased home values over time, increased police services, long-term transportation planning for road construction and maintenance, additional park and recreation services, and many additional coordinated services from the Town of Florence.”
Mr. Montoya went on to say, “We feel this is the right decision for the people in the annexation areas and the right decision for the existing residents of Florence. “By expanding our boundaries, we are in a better situation to provide quality municipal services without placing an unfair tax burden on our existing and future residents.”
The Town will have one year to gather signatures from property owners with the annexation area who support the annexation. In order for the annexations to be successful it must meet the guidelines set in annexation law. Annexation law requires that petition signatures be obtained from more than one-half of the property owners and the owners of one–half or more of the assessed value of the property in the area that is subject to taxation. If the petitions reflect the minimum signatures and property values required per annexation law, the Town will be able to take action on the annexation ordinances and expand its boundaries.
The blank annexation petitions are expected to be filed in mid-August. After a 30 day waiting period, the Town has 12 months to collect the amount of signatures required to finalize the annexation. The annexation is expected to be completed sometime between July 1, 2014 and mid- September, 2014.
Lisa Garcia, Florence Town Clerk and Deputy Town Manager, will be responsible for the collection of signatures and ensuring an accurate process. She can be contacted at (520) 868-7552 or by email with questions about the signature collection process.