Mandan News

Letters of protest could overturn annexation proposal

By Brian L. Gray

 

The Morton County Commission met during a special meeting on July 5 and voted unanimously to disagree with the city’s decision to annex 1,000 acres of land into Mandan.

The county will send a letter of protest to the city protesting the annexation, which would include an addition of land to the north and northwest of the city’s limits.

The letter from the commissioners now adds to the county residents who are against the annexation. For a proposed annexation to be overturned, at least 25 percent of the impacted homeowners must protest. By the day of the July 5 meeting, nearly 30 percent of homeowners submitted a letter of protest.

Many letters from residents cited worries about costs to their homes, from having to pay for water, sewer and road services. City Administrator Jim Neubauer says that while property taxes could go up, homeowners would also save money with lowered utility costs.

The city will now decide whether it kills the proposal or if it will move into mediation. The Mandan City Commission meets next on Tuesday, July 16, at Mandan City Hall.

The city proposed a similar annexation in 2007, which went into mediation for a decision to be made. It was determined that the city should wait a few years until development begins to pick up.