Killeen council

Developer Gary Purser speaks on his voluntary annexation petition during a public hearing on Tuesday.

During a special Killeen City Council meeting on Tuesday, homebuilder Gary Purser Jr. spoke on his petition to annex approximately 76.459 acres on South Clear Creek Road to the city.

“The property already has infrastructure, the city does not have to pay for any infrastructure. So, I just want to make sure you all understand that. There’s a 16-inch water line on the front of the property … you have a lift station that ya’ll built out there. So the city’s infrastructure is there,” he said.

Purser submitted one of two voluntary annexation petitions the city received in March — WBW Land is seeking the annexation of two tracts of land adjacent to 7501 Chaparral Road, totaling approximately 83.01 acres.

Each petition had its own public hearing Tuesday before council’s workshop meeting.

No representative from WBW Land were present or submitted a statement.

Three Killeen residents — Tolley James Jr., Mellisa Brown and James Ralston — spoke on the annexation.

James and Ralston made their comments during Purser’s petition hearing. Brown voiced her concerns during both public hearings.

Ralston said his concern on Purser’s petition is not of building property but its location adjacent to 5601 Clear Creek Road.

The land is close to a U.S. Army training area, according to Ralston.

“Sometime in 2016, the U.S. Army did a Joint Land Use Study and they don’t do that without a good reason. There a little nervous about encroachment. As a matter of fact, there were two studies,” Ralston said.

Both James and Brown raised the question of why is the annexation “is being rushed.”

“I have more questions than answers on this proposed voluntary annexation. What would be the rush to annex now? Since the council is actively thinking about impact fees, why not table this until you made your decision because it will be an effect on any future development,” James said.

Brown believes the public is not well informed and council seems very limited on information.

“We are asking here for a public hearing so that you can hear our voices and our thoughts on a project that we really don’t have any information on. So I feel like this is one of two public hearings that is not as impactful as it should be,” she said.

Purser explained there will be no cost of his property to be annexed, if the city votes for the annexation — it could gain revenue from property taxes.

“Right now, when it gets fully developed, you’ll make about $400,000 a year on taxes. So let’s figure 250 houses, at $200,000 a house. The city’s revenue will be just on that alone, on taxes. So I don’t see any reason you wouldn’t want it,” he said.

No vote came out of the special meeting as it was part of the timeline, according to Ray Shanaa, planning and development services executive director, per state law to hold two public hearings before city council votes on the annexation ordinance.

The next public hearing will be May 21.

On April 8, a divided Killeen City Council voted to move forward to process two development companies’ requests for annexation.

The request to start the process of considering both annexation requests was passed with a vote of 4-3, with Council members Shirley Fleming, Gregory Johnson and Steve Harris voted in opposition.

The vote for the annexations ordinance will be June 11.

(1) comment

Alvin

This is the personal opinion of this writer.
Here we go again with the same voting against the swift annexation and the 4 voting for the annexation, in most cases it's the same 4. And what the devil, with a simple majority 4 is all they need to control. And I say that with the rigged city charter the 4 city council persons is all that is needed to 'control this city'. I say this as I have repeatedly asked our city manager for the date at which the city charter was changed to reflect the city council can and should vote to suppress the citizen's right to vote on 'all matters the reflect on their livelihood'. For the city charter says, and I paraphrase here: 'The citizens shall control by a majority vote, establishes that it is the exclusive power of City Council to set policy' One must control, so I have asked for the city manager to give me the time, date, and meeting in which the city council voted, or a public vote of the citizen relinquishing their right to a vote and turning it over to the city council. As I say, I have not received any communication from the city manager, Ron Olsen.
Now as to 'the vote', the vote must have been during the workshop where they go in secret, and behind closed doors to vote on maters that they do not want the citizen to hear and see. Oh this city council, Oh what powers they seek'. You know, 'greed' is a very powerful motivator', some people have it, other's do not, for it says in the Bible, 'the first shall be last'.
I am afraid I will have to go against the powerful 4 who can control this city and record a 'NO' vote, 'NO' to the annexation of this land that is right beside the military establishment and for that reason alone. But it matter not for once the home builder sells the home, he is free and clear and it becomes the home purchaser's problem that he will have to continually contend with.
As a suggestion, why don't the land owner rent or lease or sell to a farmer the land in question. That way no body gets hurt and the land owner gets some money fr that is what is driving this annexation.
Copy: 'Purser explained there will be no cost of his property to be annex, if the city votes for the annexation — it could gain revenue from property taxes.' End of copy.
I must say, that is stretching the truth quite a distance because whether or not the city but in the improvement, for that is exactly what it is, the city paid for it, and I expect that 'the city will go ahead and pat for any future developments of his property. I personally feel that this city, the magnificent 4, will continue paying up front for all developments.
Now as to the legality of their being a vote of the city council as to:
Copy: 'The request to start the process of considering both annexation requests was passed with a vote of 4-3, with Council members Shirley Fleming, Gregory Johnson and Steve Harris voted in opposition.' End of copy.
As I recall, in the 'City of Killeen – Governing Standards and Expectations – adopted via Resolution dated 6/27/2018', it states that 'Work Session Meetings, and I quote from this document that 'meetings are informal and no formal action shall be taken unless the posted agenda indicates otherwise'. With this, I cannot see a vote to 'start the process' as this would be defined as a formal request which is not to considered'.
This has been the personal opinion of this writer and nothing shall be used, in context or without or changed in any way without first notifying, and receiving explicit approval from this writer.
One of the 4.28 % who voted.

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