Published on April 30th, 2013 | by NSB Observer0
NSB Annexation Public Meeting
Through the end of 2013, owners of property in the unincorporated areas north and south of State Road 44 may annex into the City of New Smyrna Beach for free. Owners interested in taking advantage of waived annexation fees may get additional information at a public meeting at 6 p.m., Thursday, May 16, at the Brannon Center, 105 S. Riverside Dr., New Smyrna Beach.
“We want to make sure property owners have accurate information about the option to voluntarily annex into the City,” said Gail Henrikson, New Smyrna Beach planning manager. “Most of the day-to-day things will not change.”
In addition to waived annexation fees, Henrikson cites historically lower property taxes as one benefit. Property taxes on incorporated properties have been lower than those levied on comparable properties in the unincorporated (County) areas over the past four years. For example, in 2013 a home with a taxable value of $171,000 in the City will pay $235 less than the same home in the unincorporated area.
Annexed properties also will receive increased trash pick up and local representation at City workshops and town hall and commission meetings.
In April, the City mailed to all eligible property owners an explanation of the voluntary annexation including an invitation to attend the public meeting. Within days, City staff began receiving telephone calls about the opportunity.
“It’s interesting to hear the individual concerns the property owners have,” Henrikson said. “This meeting will give everyone an opportunity to get answers to questions that are specific to their situation.”
Staff anticipated questions about land-use changes involving farm animals and trash burning. Questions about mandatory hook up to the City’s sanitary sewer system also were expected.
“No land-use changes are proposed,” Henrikson said. “Residents also are not required to hook up to the City’s sewer system as part of annexation.”
Additional questions fielded by staff have ranged from concerns over being required to change from a private utility provider to the New Smyrna Beach Utilities Commission and whether the County of Volusia is required to maintain a minimum acreage of unincorporated area, Henrikson said.
The City is seeking voluntary annexation to provide more efficient services, Henrikson said. Currently there are enclaves of unincorporated areas within the City, and municipal borders are irregular.
“By squaring off our boundaries and eliminating those unincorporated pockets, the City can streamline its services while bringing our communities together,” Henrikson added.
Nearly 2,800 parcels north and south of State Road 44 are included in the voluntary annexation area.
For more information on voluntary annexation or the public meeting, please contact the New Smyrna Beach Planning Department at 386.424.2132.