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.