MOBILE, Ala. (WKRG) — The Mobile Mayor’s Office Tuesday released updated annexation maps for the City Council’s consideration.
There are four separate areas west and northwest of the current city limits. They are very similar to maps introduced in January.
The City Council could call for elections in none, some, or all of the areas. If all areas are granted the right to vote and approve annexation, Mobile’s population would grow by 28,000 from 184,000 residents to 212,000.
“It would be pretty much a campaign,” said Jim Barber, Mobile Mayor’s Chief of Staff. “It is a call for an election. And there’s a campaign in those neighborhoods, just like you saw us go throughout the city of Mobile and meet with business groups, meet with neighborhoods.”
If an annexation vote is approved by the City Council, Mobile Count Probate Judge Don Davis would have ten days to approve the resolution. Elections would be held between 20 days and 40 days of the approval of the resolution.
“If you annex without revenue you’re going down,” said former city councilman Frederick Richardson. “There aren’t enough businesses in the annex areas to pay for the services “
If voters approve annexation, the areas would be exempt from ad valorem taxes for five years.
Additional annexation maps:
Last month, the City of Mobile released a $100,000 independent study on annexation. Consulting firm PFM used data from the U.S. Census Bureau and many City of Mobile departments to “evaluate the projected expenses, revenues and demographic impact” of four proposed annexation areas. The study concluded that under all four possible annexation scenarios, Mobile would have a majority of African-American voters and four of seven city council districts would have a majority of African-American voters.
“Based on a third-party study from PFM, we got the third study and in 10 years we could be bringing in 10 years over $105 million so lets remove the revenue component off,” said Corey Penn, District 1 councilman.
Mayor Sandy Stimpson and supporters of annexation say it would provide more tax revenue for the city and the boost in population would make Mobile eligible for more federal funds. They also fear Mobile could eventually end up landlocked by other municipalities.