City Reduces Annexation Area

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Meridian's City Council has dropped the Sonny Montgomery Industrial Park from a proposed annexation plan.

The decision was made in a City Council executive session Thursday.

"This decision was purely based on what we felt was in the best interest of economic development for this area," said Mayor John Robert Smith of Meridian. "And, in fact, one that we had stated very clearly going in that if there was not a mutually agreeable arrangement with the industrial park, we would remove that industrial park from annexation. We felt now was the time to do that."

Smith said this action will not change the court date of the annexation hearing nor slow up the process in any way.

"The way you get an area out of an annexation is you offer no proof when you get to court and council gave me the authority to direct the attorney for the city not to put on proof for that particular area which we would call the exclusion area," Smith said.

Some time ago, the board of supervisors engaged an attorney to oppose annexation of the industrial park but not the other areas. Contacted by Newscenter 11, county administrator Rex Hiatt said, in his opinion, the city's action was a good move that could only improve economic development in our county.