Sunday, 25 September 2022

Commission looks at Parallel Drive annexation

LAKEPORT – This week, a local commission will consider adding 150 acres to the City of Lakeport's boundaries.


The Local Area Formation Commission – or LAFCO – will consider the Parallel Drive annexation issue at a meeting at 9:30 a.m. Wednesday, June 6, at Lakeport City Hall, 225 Park St.


Lakeport Community Development Director Richard Knoll said the 150-acre area runs along the west side of Parallel Drive, extending from the current city limits which is the southern boundary of a vacant orchard property to the south of KFC, the Kentucky Fried Chicken franchise down to the Highway 175/Parallel Drive intersection.


The area is within the city's sphere of influence, or urban growth boundaries, Knoll said. It includes a population of 50 people and about 24 dwellings, he added.


The annexation process started two years ago, said Knoll. At that time, the city was considering a much larger area, about double the size of that currently proposed.


After surveying area residents and conducting a public workshop, Knoll said a number of people voiced opposition to joining the city, and the area under consideration was reduced to 150 acres.


What the annexation would mean for property owners and residents, said Knoll, is different services. Lakeport Police would take over policing the area from the sheriff's office. Residents would be required to participate in the city's universal – or mandatory – garbage service and would have to observe a permanent burn ban.


Property taxes would not change, Knoll said; neither would fire services, which the Lakeport Fire Protection District would continue to cover.


Lakeport also would offer the area sewer and water services, an issue which delayed the annexation's consideration.


The Parallel Drive annexation had been scheduled for consideration by LAFCO earlier this year, said Knoll. But when the state hit the city with a cease and desist order on hookups to the city sewer system in January, due to a capacity issue that manifested itself last year, Lakeport officials decided to postpone the annexation discussion.


“We put it on hold because the cease and desist order had the connection ban,” said Knoll. “We felt like we needed to sort out the implications for that with respect to annexation.”


Knoll continued, “The city really does need to address and resolve this sewer capacity issue,” both for the purposes of expansion and in-fill development. The city is doing that through, among other things, some proposed expansion projects, Knoll said.


LAFCO's staff is recommending the annexation's approval, said Knoll.


He said it's the city's position that it makes sense for the Parallel Drive area to be within Lakeport's city limits because of its close proximity to the city and the fact that it's already equipped for growth through city services.


The city's draft General Plan, which will be the subject of a June 19 City Council public hearing, calls for about 1,000 more acres to be annexed over the life of the plan, said Knoll, which the document itself says is a 20-year timeframe.


Some of the areas slated for eventual annexation are about 400 acres of the City of Lakeport Municipal Sewer District, which the council has been looking at for a golf and residential subdivision development; and 500 to 600 acres of potential that includes an area near the city limits along Scotts Valley Road, the South Main Street corridor and an area west of the Parallel Drive annexation, Knoll said.


The Parallel Drive annexation isn't a given, said Knoll.


For starters, LAFCO could choose to turn it down. If LAFCO does approve it, there are still several steps required to finish the process, Knoll explained.


There has been opposition to the plan by area residents, he added. If enough opposition exists from property owners, the issue could go out to an election of voters and landowners in the area, which could prevent the area from joining the city.


“It's an interesting process,” he said.


E-mail Elizabeth Larson at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..


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