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Sugar Hill proposes annexing 700 acres

SUGAR HILL - City officials propose annexing about 700 acres through a legislative annexation that will affect more than 200 property owners, according to City Manager Bob Hail.

The annexation is designed to clean up Sugar Hill's ragged city limit boundaries, Hail said.

None of the proposed annexations are land islands.

"We are trying to straighten up our boundaries and align our city limits along roadways," Hail said. "We want to do away with this going in and out of the city. We surround these properties on three sides, almost four, but it is not an island because the lines don't meet completely."

Most of the acreage lies near the intersection of Ga. Highway 20 and Suwanee Dam Road.

"That is the ugliest corner and it is not in the city," Hail said. "If it were, we would have control of the litter, signage, and everything else there to the satisfaction of the people driving by."

Property owners are being notified of the proposed annexation by mail, Hail said.

Dirk Bender, who lives on a targeted property, said he is OK with becoming a Sugar Hill resident.

"I prefer to be part of a city than of an unincorporated county," Bender said. "I do want to know if we will get the services for the additional fees we will be paying."

Thomas Hennessy, another affected property owner, said he will sign a petition opposing the annexation.

"Why should I pay more taxes for things I don't need?" Hennessy asked. "I have all the representation I need with the county."

Hail stressed the proposal is still in the planning stages and encouraged property owners to voice their concerns.

"This has not been finalized yet. It is still just a proposal" Hail said. "If it goes through, it will be before the Legislature in this session."

Rep. Bobby Reese, R-Sugar Hill, was unavailable for comment at press time.

Recent mass annexations in Auburn and Norcross have caused controversy between property owners and the municipalities.

n What: Public informational meeting regarding legislative annexations

•When: 6:15 p.m. Jan 8

•Where: City Hall Annex