City Council voted to expand the city, annexing three sections of land into the city limits at a regular meeting Thursday evening. 

It was the first of two readings, so the decision is not final. City Manager Jarrett Atkinson said tonight’s vote is a good indicator of the final outcome.

However, the council made a few changes and amendments to the original proposals before they reached a decision.  

“I think City Council has taken a tremendous amount of input, and that’s the purpose. I think our council has listened,” Atkinson said. “Annexation is one of those deals that is hard, no matter when or where you do it. Often you don’t end up with everybody happy, and hopefully not everybody is displeased.”

Council voted to extend fireworks sales until January 31, 2019. They also voted to change some of the proposed borders determining what would get annexed. One of those changes moved the line near the Tejas Estates neighborhood, 55 feet from Alcove Avenue, to exclude those neighbors from the annexation. The original proposal stretched more than 600 feet off of Alcove and included some houses in the neighborhood, but not all.

Mayor Pro Tem Latrelle Joy proposed another neighborhood to be excluded in the middle of the second proposed tract of land off of N. Frankford, but this amendment failed.

The council also extensively discussed changing the borders of the land being considered up by the airport.  

Atkinson said as the city grows, they annex portions of land to manage development and mitigate any current or future issues.

“The growth is going to happen anyway,” Atkinson said, “but the ability to have any kind of management of what happens doesn’t exist unless you are in the city.”

Many county residents have told they are against the annexation as it was originally proposed, but Atkinson said the city is trying to answer all of their questions.

For instance, while people in the annexed areas would see a tax increase, they would not be forced to hook up to city utilities.

“The taxes never did and never will be used to pay for a fee for service type of utilities,” Atkinson said. 

Another major concern from residents was how it would affect their ownership of livestock. At Thursday’s meeting, they presented a potential new zoning district that would be more lenient on livestock and animal ownership. 

The final decision will be made at the next City Council meeting.