The Annexation of the Berkshire Downs neighborhood was officially adopted at the January 6, 2009 City Council meeting with a vote of 7-1 with me as the only opposition vote. Then on March 2, about a dozen neighbors petitioned the City to ask for a reconsideration of the annexation decision. Mayor Meeker suggested a community meeting be held on March 31 to clarify the details of the annexation process and answer neighbor concerns. I attended this meeting along with Mayor Meeker and the strong neighborhood turnout was indicative of the concern people feel over this issue. Since then many neighbors have continued to request that I bring to City Council a reconsideration of the Berkshire Downs annexation. However since I cast the original opposition vote, this prevents me from officially reintroducing the issue.
At the 4/7/09 City Council meeting Rodger Koopman, who is the councillor for this district, asked the Council to revisit the Berkshire Downs annexation. Discussion at the table noted the overwhelming response from citizens against the annexation, particularly in regards to taxes and assessment fees. While the neighborhood will be officially annexed in June 2009, the Mayor noted that most of the assessment fees will not come for 2+ years. The question was also raised whether this is primarily an issue of timing since the repeal of annexation now would complicate any future need or desire by Berkshire Downs for annexation.
The Mayor called a vote and the repeal of the Berkshire Downs Annexation was defeated 4-4 with Councillors McFarlane, Koopman, Isley and Stephenson voting For the repeal of annexation and Councillors West, Baldwin, Crowder and Mayor Meeker voting Against the repeal. The annexation moves forward as planned.