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Despite Residents Pleas, Council Approves Annexation Plans

Joey Palacios
Texas Public Radio
Citizens Jon and Robin Perrin unrolled more than 2,000 signatures against I-10 annexation all around Council chambers. Some 70 people signed up for citizens to be heard, only four spoke in favor of annexation.

The San Antonio City Council has approved the annexation plans of four areas around Bexar County following a 9-2 vote Thursday. The portions include parts of I-10 West near Boerne, U.S. 281 North outside of Loop 1604, and parts of the South Side near Loop 410.
The approved annexation plans took two years to push through. At first Mayor Ivy Taylor requested six areas be annexed, but she asked for a delay on a vote last year.

“I asked the staff to slow down and directed them to give some more analysis to both the fiscal side and other components of it. They came back with what we have today,” Taylor says.The 15 square mile I-10 West annexation will take about three years. It has about 16,000 residents. Mike Stewart lives near Boerne and is one of 60 peopled who spoke against annexation. He says it would increase his property taxes but not provide enough services.

“The impact to my family is almost $2,000 a year. At this stage of my life that’s real money,” he says.

The businesses along the Highway 281 portion could become part of San Antonio as early as December 31st, pending an approval vote in early December. Under an agreement, the homes in that area won’t be annexed for 17 years.

Councilmembers Ron Nirenberg of District 8 and Shirley Gonzalez of District 5 were the only dissenting votes. Nirenberg says the plan is incongruent with the desire for sustainability throughout the city’s current boundaries.“We have demonstrated time and again we aren’t willing to make the tough decisions to achieve sustainability in the city we’ve already got.”

Southside annexation could be completed also by Dec. 31st.

Joey Palacios can be reached atJoey@TPR.org and on Twitter at @Joeycules