LAUREL, MS (WDAM) - The City of Laurel is one step closer to annexing the Pendorff community. Special appointed Judge James Bell approved the city’s request to annex the area Tuesday morning.
A representative from the Pendorff Community Association said they plan to appeal the decision.
The annexation fight has been going on for years. Laurel wanted to annex the area to expand its tax base and acquire land for development. The City of Ellisville, along with many people living in Pendorff, opposed the idea.
Before making his decision, Bell considered the needs of the residents in the community. He found there are services the city can offer that would benefit those residents.
Bell ruled the city has the capacity to provide sewer, water, police and fire protection to the area. The area’s fire rating will drop from a 10 to a five after the annexation, lowering fire insurance premiums for people living there.
The judge also determined Laurel’s plans for infrastructure improvements were well thought out and proved the city can provide services to the Pendorff area. The city now has five years to invest $16.5 million into infrastructure improvements for the area.