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Charles Town to discuss growth with commission

July 12, 2002|by DAVE McMILLION

charlestown@herald-mail.com

CHARLES TOWN, W.Va. - Another Jefferson County mayor is asking for time to sit down with county officials to discuss future growth in the county.

Charles Town Mayor Randy Hilton said Thursday there is nothing specific he wants to talk about with county officials, but he thinks it is important to start a dialogue between the city and county about how the county will grow in coming years.

"We need to be talking to each other," Hilton said. "We don't want to surprise each other."

Hilton made the request in a letter he sent to the Jefferson County Planning Commission.

A similar request was made recently by Ranson Mayor David Hamill.

The commission decided Thursday to organize a dinner meeting with the mayors where they could sit down and discuss a wide range of growth issues

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Hamill made his request as Ranson was approving three annexation requests that allowed the town to more than triple in size.

The annexation, which allowed Ranson to grow by about 1,700 acres, included land where development is being planned.

Although Ranson is considering a growth pattern for the land that would allow for more dense development than what would have been allowed in the county, Hamill wants to make sure Ranson grows in "lock step" with the county.

Many scenarios could unfold as a result of cities annexing large sections of land, Commissioner Al Hooper said Thursday.

Businesses that find themselves inside new city boundaries could decide to move out of the towns to escape business and occupation taxes that cities are able to levy, Hooper said.

Doing so could create new retail development areas.

"It can really disrupt planning," Hooper said.

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