Some Frisco Residents Like State Bill Banning Forced Annexations

FRISCO (CBS11) – Ramona and Bruce Lee bought their house on an acre and a half of property in an unincorporated area of Collin County between Frisco and McKinney 15 years ago.

“When we bought here there were cows and horses back there where those homes are,” said Ramona.

While they moved to the country, they say the city found them sooner than they thought and hoped.

Earlier this year, the city of Frisco annexed Plum Lane where they live and other nearby land despite all their efforts and their neighbors to fight it.

Now a bill passed by the State Senate, SB 6, would require cities to hold an election for the registered voters in the area to be annexed.

A majority of them would have to approve before the city could annex them.

Governor Greg Abbott called on the state legislature to pass such a bill during a special session that began earlier this month.

The measure will now be considered by the House.

The Lees urge the House to pass it. “I think it’s about a year and a half too late for us, but for other folks, there’s always hope because I’ll tell you, they would have had a 27-0 vote against annexation.”

The city offered the Plum Lane residents to delay the annexation by ten years, but residents say not everyone on the street agreed to the terms of the deal.

Current state law requires 100 percent of the people impacted approve.

For its part, the city of Frisco opposes SB 6.

The city said in a statement, “The requirements of the bill, as we understand it, do not recognize the problems which are created when urbanized development occurs outside the city limits.”

The city also says, “election fatigue is a concern as is the erosion of cities’ local control.”

Mayors from other cities across the state have told lawmakers that annexation helps them grow.

But Ramona Lee says they’re now preparing to pay a city property tax for the first time living here. “So what is our $2,000 a year going to provide for us?”

The city says its in the process of developing water and sewer line main infrastructure that will serve this area.

“We understand the cities want to grow, but on the other hand, they should respect the people in the areas that they want to take in. If they don’t want to be taken, leave them alone,” said Bruce Lee.

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