What will be annexed?

Kyle exempts some properties from annexation; extends time until 2nd reading

The Kyle City Council whittled away at areas east of Interstate 35 that had been scheduled for involuntary annexation at their Sept. 17 meeting and also left open an 90-day window on a second reading of the annexation ordinance, a move intended to give some property owners more time to work with city staff on formulating development agreements.

In all, some 979 acres divided into 8 areas had been considered for annexation into the city, which has the authority to regulate land use.

The whole of Area 4, consisting of 127.4 acres between FM 150 and CR 158 along Traynor Drive, was removed from the annexation plan; as was Area 1 at the intersection of Bunton Creek Road and Goforth Road.

Portions of Area 8, 3 and 5 were also removed. Regarding portions of Area 7, along FM 150 where D&D storage is located, council voted to direct city staff to formulate a Chapter 212 Development Agreement with the landowners; and in Area 6, the County Line Business Park, the vote was to exempt the 10 acres from annexation for three years to give them time to fully build out, at which time a development agreement would be required.

Left undecided was Area 2, which contains the Walton property and the LCRA substation. Council discussed a Chapter 43 agreement for the area. However, a motion will have to be made a second reading on whether to remove or annex the one-acre parcel where the substation is located.

Key to the discussions were the different types of state-mandated Development Agreements, explained during the meeting by Assistant City Manager James Earp.

A Chapter 43 agreement, he said, is one the city is obligated to offer during an annexation process to properties that have agricultural exemptions. “It allows for the continued use of that property in the way it’s being used — if you’re ranching it, farming it, using it for hay cuts — you can continue to do that usage and not be annexed by the city for a set time period” that was later referenced to be 45 years.

That differs, he said from a Chapter 212 Development Agreement, under which cities have the ability to voluntarily enter into an agreement with properties located in the city’s extra territorial jurisdiction that allow the continuation of current usage. Under that agreement, annexation would not necessarily by triggered by sale of the land but it would by a different usage.

“With a 212, neighbors would have a say, at least they would have a mechanism to have their voices heard,” Earp said. “What I’m hearing is, they want their residential areas to remain that way.”

The discussions were contentious at times, with Council member Daphne Tenorio drawing applause when she admitted she was “completely completely confused,” and that the whole annexation process  of “going to one map to another map to another map” is “ridiculous.”

Earp points out that developers who might be planning something that would draw opposition from neighbors look for pockets of land unprotected by any agreement, referring them to them as “predatory type developers.”

Concerns were also voices about commercial enterprises along FM 150 located near schools, as both the County Line business park and A&D Storage are.

Property owners have until the second reading of the ordinance to returned signed development agreements and although that was scheduled for Oct. 1, council exercised their authority to put that off for up to 90 days.

When the second reading is held, it will be concerning a shorter list, Mayor Travis Mitchell noted.

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