By Lenny C. Lepola
The first two requests Sunbury received for properties to be annexed into the village are now approved with emergency language, bypassing the statutory 30-day waiting period before they became effective.
The first annexation, an Expedited Type II Annexation for 128.285 acres west of Sunbury known as the Dye, Walker, Kirk’s Creek Investment Annexation, was approved during the July 9 Sunbury Village Council meeting.
The second Expedited Type II Annexation to bring another 183.912 acres into Sunbury, immediately adjacent to Dominion Homes Sunbury Meadows Subdivision, was approved Aug. 6 by council following a third reading with a small audience on hand.
In chambers were Brenda Price, Warren Owen, the attorney representing the Price family, Mike Shade and developer Joe Ciminello.
The only member of the public in chambers to object to the recent annexations was Cheshire Road resident Gail Jameson, who discussed possible commercial development of the land.
“When we moved to Sunbury on Cheshire Road we were told the field behind us would be developed as residential (not commercial),” Jameson said during the visitor’s section of the meeting. “Other residents on our road were under the same impression. We moved to Sunbury to get away from traffic and big development.”
Jameson noted that during the second reading of the Dye, Walker, Kirk’s Creek Annexation on July 9, members of council voted first to deny the annexation request, then, following an extended discussion, put the annexation back on the table and voted unanimously to approve it.
“You voted two times on that annexation,” Jameson said. “Maybe it’s legal, but now you have a bad PR image.”
There were two ordinances on the agenda during last Wednesday’s Price Annexation discussion. Ordinance 2014-14 was the annexation agreement, and Ordinance 2014-15 was the annexation itself.
Sunbury Village Solicitor David Brehm explained that Ordinance 2014-14 contained minor changes that council subsequently approved; and Ordinance 2014-15 contained added reasons for the emergency language, also approved by council members.
“Sewer service to that corridor goes through the Price property,” Brehm said. “It needs to be oversized to get beyond their property to the Dye property and the commercial development.”
Brehm said the Price property has a high degree of contiguity to the village; three sides of the property to be annexed border residential development in the Village. He also noted that Dominion Homes has prepaid almost all of the sewer tap fees for homes in the Sunbury Meadows development. Dominion’s final payment is in 2015 and those prepaid tap fees pays debt on the Village’s $12 million sanitary sewer plant expansion.
“Our sewer plant debt service is paid by new users,” Brehm said. “When Dominion Homes moves to the other side of Route 3 and has all of their tap fees paid, there’s no other residential development in the village pending. If you put it off, fine, but if you want to facilitate that process this would be the next one.”
With very little discussion council members approved Ordinances 2014-14 and 2014-15.
Last week a map began circulating via email showing a third Expedited Type II Annexation request for 247.471 acres west of South Galena Road, adjacent to the property annexed into the village on July 9 and reaching I71.
The drawing, prepared by ME Consultants, is dated Aug. 5. If an annexation request is submitted to the Delaware County Commissioners, the Village of Sunbury would be required to pass a services resolution and the annexation request would go back to the commissioners for their approval, then return to the Village for a 60-day waiting period before it’s placed on a council agenda.