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Commission definesboundary for growth

May 29, 2002|by DAVE McMILLION

charlestown@herald-mail.com

CHARLES TOWN, W.Va. - As Ranson, W.Va., officials are considering a group of annexation requests that could double the size of their town, Charles Town officials are trying to decide how they will handle future annexation requests.

Under an annexation policy developed by the Charles Town Planning Commission, annexations will be favored only inside a "Charles Town Growth Boundary" that has been drawn around the town.

The boundary follows landmarks including Country Club Road and Kabletown Road to the east, the southern border of Norborne Glebe development and Cave Road, the southern border of the proposed Huntfield development, the western border of Locust Hills and the border with Ranson.

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In "exceptional circumstances," areas outside the boundary may be considered for annexation, according to the policy, which was fine-tuned by members of the planning commission Tuesday night.

The policy must be approved by the Charles Town City Council.

The policy lists seven items that council members must consider when deciding whether to annex a property into the city.

One of those items says that no annexation should result in a tax increase to current city residents.

In January, Charles Town City Council members approved annexations to allow the 800-home Norborne Glebe development and the 3,300-home Huntfield development into the city.

Tuesday night, local developer Lou Athey asked the city to annex 52 acres that is located near the Huntfield development. The property would be used for residential development.

The planning commission recommended that the city council delay taking action on Athey's request until it has had a chance to act on the proposed annexation policy.

"Things are moving so fast that we (need) some guideposts," said planning commission member Matt Ward.

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