Suburban Plaza Annexation Would Add 2,000 New Residents to Decatur
For the next few months, the Decatur City Commission will be taking the public pulse and deciding whether to proceed with annexation
The Decatur City Commission got a quick lesson Monday night on the numerical implications of annexing six areas and increasing the population by about 2,000 people.
If the commission moves ahead, a referendum could be held Nov. 5, 2013.
City Manager Peggy Merriss' detailed power point presentation has now been posted on the city website. Here are the highlights of what annexation would mean:
- Added population: 2,028 (2010 census was 19,237 for the current city).
- Added number of students in the City Schools of Decatur: 230 to start with, 400-430 in eight-10 years (Current student population is 3,627).
- Added property tax for city government: About $1 million yearly, without exemptions.
- Added property tax for city schools: About $1.7 million yearly, without exemptions.
- Total added value: $175,879,561 billion (About $62.8 billion in land, $113.1 billion in buildings.)
- Added costs for city government and the school system: Not determined.
The areas considered for annexation include the northwest quadrant, around the shopping center anchored by Publix; Suburban Plaza; neighborhoods behind DeKalb Medical; the Derrytown neighborhood on the east side of town; the United Methodist Children's Home; and the southwest corner of the city. (See map attached to this story.)
Now the city commission must decide if it wants to proceed with the annexation. The commission indicated it wanted to communicate with people who live in the affected areas, but no specific method of doing so was offered.
Five years ago ciy leaders considered annexing property but backed off because of the effect it would have had on the school system.
The student population is growing and has gone up about 12 percent each of the last two years.
Merriss proposed this tenative timetable for the process.
- Now through November: Information meetings with residents and people who live in areas that might be annexed.
- Dec. 3, 2012. Final information session and public hearing.
- Dec. 17, 2012. Commission votes on annexation resolution.
- January-April, 2013. General Assembly considers local legislation authorizing an annexation referendum.
- Nov. 5, 2013. Annexation referendum.
- Dec. 15, 2013. If approved, annexation becomes effective.
- June 1, 2014. First installation of tax bills for annexed areas.
- Aug. 2014. School year starts with students from the annexed areas.
Still to be determined: Will the city accept petitions from other neighborhoods that want to be annexed into Decatur?