WEB: Residents Rally to Reform State's Annexation Laws
North Carolinians opposed to involuntary annexation will rally in Raleigh on Wednesday.
Residents from across the state will call on members of the General Assembly to act on a recent recommendation by the House Select Committee on Municipal Annexation to impose a one-year moratorium on involuntary annexations. The moratorium would give legislators time to craft new annexation laws.
One of the largest contingents at the rally is expect to come from Pinewild Country Club. Residents are locked in a legal battle with the village of Pinehurst to stop the planned annexation of the gated community.
Pinewild residents have filed lawsuits in state and federal courts to block the annexation.
Litigation is still pending and the annexation of Pinewild, which was scheduled to occur on June 30, is on hold.
The event begins at 1 p.m. at Bicentennial Mall on the Jones Street side of the General Assembly. A rally will be held at 3:30 p.m. A march follows at 4:45 p.m. The day ends with a protest of the North Carolina League of Municipalities' event at 5 p.m. The league, which represents towns and cities, supports the state's current laws on involuntary annexation.
Annexation opponents say the current laws are unfair and abuse the rights of citizens. The say property owners are often left with no improvement in services after they are annexed, and many pay extra taxes for services they don't want and/or need.
Proponents of involuntary annexation say the process allows for controlled growth of North Carolina municipalities.
The House Select Committee on Municipal Annexation will make its recommendations to the General Assembly later this year. The moratorium would allow the legislature to act on the proposals during the long session that begins in early 2009.
This will be the fourth year that opponents of involuntary annexation have held a rally in Raleigh. Organizers say the crowd of protesters has grown each year.
For coverage of the rally check back with The Pilot online at www.thepilot.com.
Contact Tom Embrey at 693-2473 or by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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