Advocate editorial board opinion: City has chance to grow, develop northward
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Sometimes, cities shrink, whither and by doing so, lose their youth. The youth move away to pursue their careers.
On the other hand, when cities grow, more opportunities present themselves for the younger generation. This is one of many reasons for growing a city.
We are fortunate that our city is growing. And one indicator of this growth, besides obvious ones like new manufacturing, new drilling techniques and an expanding university, is planned annexation, which brings new housing, businesses and more.
"There are cities that are boxed by rural subdivisions or by other cities," said Mayor Will Armstrong. Victoria has a chance to grow and should.
Armstrong said blocked cities cannot collect new ad valorem taxes from annexed areas. These would be new taxes that could be used to repair and upgrade old existing streets and drainage.
Armstrong said annexation will play an important role in keeping Victoria healthy.
We agree, anytime the city annexes more area, it is growing, and we are for growth and keeping the city vibrant.
"I want to work on annexation this year - get all of the estimates, get the process started," Armstrong said.
In general, the area being considered for annexation is around North U.S. Highway 77. The estimated cost of the annexation is $3.9 million, and work could begin next year and continue into 2013.
Armstrong said the city will have to have public hearings on the proposed annexation, and he said once annexation is approved, the city is required to provide all utilities and services to the area within 2½ years. He said he wants his grandchildren to enjoy a city where they one day can get an education and stay.
Those new streets and utilities will be built to newer and better standards than those that already exist in Victoria, according to Armstrong. He estimated that the newer standards will prolong the life of the utilities and streets - this means the new ad valorem taxes gained from annexation would help shore up the city's older infrastructure.
The prospect of Victoria growing more is exciting. We urge the city council to pursue annexation for the benefit of the entire community.
This editorial reflects the views of the Victoria Advocate's editorial board.