Petition for Annexation filed in hopes to expand Oxford city limits

Published 9:00 am Friday, May 11, 2018

At the instruction of the Oxford Board of Aldermen, a Petition for Annexation at the Lafayette County Chancery Court on April 26 by City Attorney Pope Mallette.

On April 3, the board voted to approve an ordinance announcing the city’s intent to enlarge the corporate limit boundaries of Oxford and gave Mallette permission to file the petition.

Chancery Court Judge Glenn Alderson has yet to set a court date on the annexation.

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The city is asking to annex about 12 square miles of land in six area of the county close to the city limits. Currently, Oxford is 16 square miles. The population would increase by about 3,600 people.

Area 1 includes West Oxford Loop extended, portions of Old Sardis Road leading to FNC Park and Lakeway Gardens; Area 2, in the northeast area of Oxford takes in a portion of Highway 30, part of Old Highway 7 North; Area 3 takes in portions of Highway 6 where the new Lafayette County Business Center is being built, Lafayette County School District campus and Brittany Woods; Area 4, in the southern part of Oxford down South Lamar will take in Southpointe and Twin Gates subdivision; Area 5 off Highway 6 takes in Thacker Heights and Royal Oaks; and Area 6 which takes in property east of Highway 6 north of the Wellsgate subdivision.

If no objections are made, and the judge rules in favor of the annexation, and no appeal is filed, it’s possible the annexation could go through by late September or early October.

However, if objections or an appeal are filed, the annexation could be delayed by a year or more.

If the annexation is approved, it will not change the school districts boundaries. Children will continue to attend the same schools that they attended before the annexation.

At the annexation hearing, city attorneys will need to present evidence to address 12 factors of reasonableness at the hearing, which include:

  • The municipality’s need to expand
  • Whether the area sought to be annexed is reasonably within a path of growth of the city
  • Potential health hazards from sewage and waste disposal in the annexed areas
  • The municipality’s financial ability to make the improvements and furnish municipal services promised
  • Need for zoning and overall planning in the areas
  • Need for municipal services in the areas sought to be annexed
  • Whether there are natural barriers between the city and the proposed annexation area
  • Past performance and time element involved in the city’s provision of services to its present residents
  • Economic or other impacts of the annexation upon those who live in or own property in the proposed annexation area
  • Impact of the annexation upon the voting strength of protected minority groups
  • Whether the property owners and other inhabitants of the areas sought to be annexed, have in the past, and in the foreseeable future unless annexed will, because of their reasonable proximity to the corporate limits of the municipality, enjoy economic and social benefits of the municipality without paying their fair share of taxes
  • Any other factors that may suggest reasonableness