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Fourth Ranson annexation approved

July 19, 2002|by DAVE McMILLION

charlestown@herald-mail.com

CHARLES TOWN, W.Va. - The town of Ranson, which has already more than tripled in size because of three annexations totaling about 1,700 acres, grew by another 123 acres Thursday.

The fourth annexation became official when the Jefferson County Commission signed off on a request to bring what is called the Wysong farm into Ranson.

Like some of the other annexed properties, the farm is owned by a large family.

The parcel is south of Leetown Road and west of Mildred Street in Ranson.

The Wysong farm annexation was initially considered with the three other expansions but was delayed because there was a misunderstanding about the location of the property, according to Charles Town attorney Jim Crawford, who has been working for the town of Ranson on the annexations.

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Two more annexation requests have come before the Ranson Town Council, Mills said.

Glenville Lloyd, who owns about 100 acres of farmland along W.Va. 9 north of Ranson, has asked for that land to be annexed.

Terry and Ronnie Marcus, who are developing the Briar Run development between Flowing Springs Road and W.Va. 9 north of Ranson, have asked that a 29-acre parcel of the development also be annexed.

There was continued discussion Thursday about local towns annexing large portions of land in the county.

The commission has shown some concern about towns gobbling up all the prime development land in the county and creating confusing situations by having town boundaries extending different ways into the county.

The annexation of the Wysong farm now leaves an "island" of county-owned property surrounded by the town of Ranson, officials said Thursday.

The section of county property includes the Orchard Hills subdivision and Cranes Meadows apartments, Crawford said.

When responding to calls, Commissioner Al Hooper said having the island of county property inside Ranson could be confusing to the Ranson Police Department and other agencies if they are not sure of the exact boundaries of the island.

There are other situations that could come into play involving government services, Hooper said.

"To me, it doesn't make sense," Hooper said.

Crawford and Ranson City Manager David Mills said they are aware it is a unique situation, but there is little they can do.

Unlike other states including Maryland, West Virginia law prohibits towns from annexing land unless the people owning the land request they be annexed, Mills said.

In Maryland, cities can initiate an annexation request to keep such situations from occurring, Mills said.

The commission said it has little recourse other than to approve annexations if the required paperwork for them appears to be in order.

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