Perry keeps Hill Road residents in city limits

mstucka@macon.comFebruary 4, 2014 

PERRY -- Breaking up is hard to do, and Perry City Council again decided to reject requests from Hill Road neighbors to be deannexed from the city limits.

In a 5-0 vote, councilmen on Tuesday turned away requests by the owners of 119 and 141 Hill Road to be deannexed from the city. The only person speaking in favor of the deannexations was Chenelle Colon, who lost her bid for deannexation of 117 Hill Road last week.

Colon said residents had been promised water and sewer service when the properties were annexed into the city, but they never got that service. City staff members say the property owners would have had to pay to get water and sewer services established, but had never done so. Meanwhile, the properties benefited from city services such as fire protection and road maintenance.

Council members offered little discussion about Tuesday’s deannexation requests, other than comparing them to Colon’s earlier request.

Separately, the City Council is considering annexing about 25 acres into the city for commercial uses. The property, in two chunks at the corner of Ga. 127 and Houston Lake Road, includes a convenience store and pasture. Five neighbors of the pasture protested the potential creation of an apartment complex in their backyards. The Perry Planning Commission is recommending that residential uses of the property be prohibited. The council is expected to vote on the annexation request at its meeting in two weeks. The property owner may build offices at the location.

Council members also approved a request to seek a grant to beautify Interstate 75’s Exit 136 interchange. The state may provide up to $50,000 for the work, but a city official said the total cost would be about $150,000. The city sought the state grant for the same location several years ago.

Separately, the council honored police Sgt. Arthur “Ray” Jackson, who retired last month after 40 years and five months of service. Police Chief Steve Lynn said Jackson was among the first wave of black police officers in Southern police departments. Technology has changed a lot since then.

“The thing that doesn’t change is it takes a good person, a good hardworking, dedicated person to be a police officer,” Lynn said. “We can have all the technology, all the tools, all the goodies a person could want. That doesn’t get the job done.”

To contact writer Mike Stucka, call 744-4251.

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