WEB: Annexation Opponents Rally in Raleigh
Pinewild residents and others from across the state demonstrated and marched in Raleigh on Wednesday to oppose forced annexation.
An estimated 400 people -- most clad in red -- gathered for a short rally and then marched past the Legislature and League of Municipalities buildings Wednesday. Marchers chanted "No More Forced," as the walked past the legislature and "Let us In" at the League of Muncipalities.
"People in both buildings are going to know they are there," said Pinewild resident John Boesch as he marched.
Residents are urging 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.
A member of the committee, Doug Aitken, told the crowd gathered that they were fighting an uphill battle.
"The Senate is saying they will not consider a moratorium bill if one is passed by the House," Aitken said.
Boesch said creating change in the law is like trying to turn an air
Dallas Woodhouse, state director of Americans for Prosperity urged residents to send a message to their elected officials.
"If they refuse to take it up," Woodhouse said, "We'll take it up in October and November."
Pinewild residents have filed two lawsuits in hopes of stoping Pinehurst's forced annexation of the gated community.
Litigation is still pending and the annexation of Pinewild, which was scheduled to occur this month is on hold.
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.
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