Killeen: City holds first public hearing on annexation of properties

KILLEEN, Texas (KWTX) There is a hot topic in the city of Killeen: should two properties currently not in city limits be annexed?

Inside a packed City Council chambers, Killeen’s growth and annexation of two properties – one on Clear Creek Road and the other on Chapparal Road – were up for discussion.

Tolly James Jr., who has lived in Killeen for nearly 25 years, says the answer is to wait.

“I just want the council to look at the whole picture. Let’s not just look at a quick dollar but the whole picture as we look at developments,” he said.

He isn’t the only one pumping the brakes.

Councilwoman Shirley Fleming says she’s against the annexation of both properties.

“The infrastructure, everything is going to have to be paid by the city of Killeen. We don’t have the money to do this. It’s going to fall back on the constituents; we’re going to have to start paying taxes and it’s going to fall back on us,” she said.

An annexation would provide both properties access to city services, including first responders.

“What kinds of stress are we going to put on our first responders, we already got them stretched out? Our police department puts about $1.4 million in overtime, so we don’t want to stress things out. We just need to look at the whole picture,” he said.

The Clear Creek Road property is within distance of Fort Hood and directly in its flight path for training.

“If they do build those residential homes out there, it’s going to be dangerous. Planes are going to be flying over those homes,” Fleming said.

On Monday, Mayor Jose Segarra talked to KWTX about how the city is growing and new developments are needed. He also talked about how filling new homes adds money to the city and keeping property taxes from rising. He also doesn’t think finding buyers will be a problem.

Builder Gary Purser Jr. told city council members $400,000 could potentially be collected a year on property taxes with nearly 250 homes going up on the property.

But is that enough?

“If we annex this and if everybody votes for this, i think they don’t care anything about Killeen. They don’t care about our constituents,” Fleming added.

Killeen residents will have one more chance to have their voices heard on May 21.

City council members could have a decision by June 11.