Group raises funds to fight annexation
FIGHTING ANNEXATION A. M. "Bubba" Martin, left, and Albert Herrington, both with Citizens Against Annexation, are fighting to keep their Eagle Pointe neighborhood from being annexed by the city of Meridian. PHOTO BY CARISA MCCAIN / THE MERIDIAN STAR
By Fredie Carmichael / staff writer
Dec. 8, 2002
A group of Lauderdale County residents has raised more than $100,000 in a three-month span to help fight Meridian's proposal to annex parts of the county.
Albert Herrington, vice-chairman of the Citizens Against Annexation, said the group has raised $104,960 since September. Herrington said he expects that amount to increase.
Citizens Against Annexation began raising money for its fight shortly after Meridian city leaders announced plans in July to annex 11.8 square miles of land north, east and west of the city.
City officials filed their annexation plans in August with the Lauderdale County Chancery Court.
The area includes 634 homes and 51 businesses. It also includes Briarwood Country Club, Eagle Pointe, a new industrial complex along Interstate 20/59 and the G.V. "Sonny" Montgomery Industrial Park.
On Friday, two Lauderdale County chancellors are expected to recuse themselves from the annexation case. When that happens, a special chancellor will be appointed to hear the case.
Meanwhile, Citizens Against Annexation plans to continue to raise money.
Members already have spent about $11,000 of their money to hire a Jackson-based lawyer and an annexation consultant from Biloxi to help represent them in the fight.
A.M. "Bubba" Martin, chairman of Citizens Against Annexation, said he hopes the financial contributions continue to flow.
Martin used a computer program he said calculated how much his neighbors' taxes could increase if annexed by the city. That, he said, got his neighbors' attention.