WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. (WLFI) - The West Lafayette City Council voted to move forward with the proposed annexation Monday. The discussion and public process will continue.
What will the annexed people in Wabash Township gain? That was a common question asked at Monday night's special meeting. There wasn't an empty seat in the room.
Overall, residents are concerned that their property taxes will go up, but the amount of services they will get in return will not be worth it. Residents said they already have fire protection and they're satisfied with their trash collection.
"Most people are really happy with what they get. Our money would go up but our services down. We wouldn't be getting a lot of the recreational type of things," said Nicole Duttlinger, a resident who lives in the area targeted for annexation.
After two hours of public comments, it came time to vote. First, the council voted 6-1 on a fiscal plan resolution. Vicki Burch was the only council member to vote against it. The fiscal plan explains what services property owners in the annexed area will receive and how the city will provide them. Burch said the numbers just didn't add up. But she, along with Mayor John Dennis, said the comments from the public were really good.
"Until I see another resolution or ordinance with the fiscal plan, regarding the annexation, I had to vote against it. I wasn't comfortable with those numbers," said Burch.
"Now it's going to be our job to make sure they have a better understanding of what our intent is or act on those concerns to revisit the actual map that we're looking at annexing," said Dennis.
It was a unanimous vote for the ordinance to move conversations along. After asking quite a few questions, Burch, along with other council members, stated that they want the discussion to continue.
Mayor Dennis said the next steps include getting out in the public and going to neighborhood meetings. He said the city must now mail out certified letters and the fiscal plan, keeping the people in the proposed annexed area informed. He said a second reading won't take place for several months, closer to the winter.
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