Memphis City Council to Discuss Annexation Practices

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(Memphis) Memphis City Council members are set to discuss a longstanding practice of extending the city sewer lines into areas of the county considered city reserve Tuesday.

“Personally, I don’t want to annex anymore areas and because of that, why would we extend the sewer lines in an area that we are not going to annex in the foreseeable future?” said Councilman Jim Strickland.

Strickland raised questions when a resolution to spend millions to extend those sewer lines came up in a recent committee meeting.

In the past, the city has extended sewer lines and then later annexed those areas.

Strickland said annexation isn’t a good idea right now, “One of our problems in Memphis is the city has gotten bigger and bigger and bigger in land size but we’ve actually lost population. And it cost money to provide services to a larger area. The police have to cover a larger area, we might have to build a new fire station and all that’s expensive."

Strickland proposes the city annex areas first and then spend the money to extend sewer lines.

“A rough estimate of 2-3 years to get the infrastructure in place and that’s one of the reasons we’ve just continued to develop sewer extension. For the past few years but I knew for a fact eventually it would come to a decision on the part of the elected officials that we would discontinue that practice,” said Director of Public Works Dwan Gilliom.

The issue is expected to be discussed at the city council meeting on March 5, 2013.