PETAL, Miss. (WDAM) - Last week, the Mississippi Supreme Court affirmed a chancery judge’s decision denying the majority of Petal’s proposed annexation of several tracts of land.
The annexation process began in 2016 when Petal sought to annex six tracts of land in Forrest County.
In 2016, Special Chancellor Robert L. Lancaster rejected Petal’s proposed annexation of land along the Evelyn Gandy Parkway stretching from Petal north-westward past Interstate 59, which included neighborhoods in Glendale and portions of the Glendale Utility District.
The five remaining tracts of land, which consisted of about 6 square miles, went to trial in December 2018.
In January 2019, Lancaster rejected the annexation proposal for three tracts of land while granting annexation of two others, which only comprised about .7 acres and .2 square miles.
Petal appealed the ruling to the Mississippi Supreme Court, which issued its ruling on Sept. 10.
Petal Mayor Hal Marx said while he’s disappointed by the ruling, he wasn’t surprised since courts usually rule in favor of lower court’s decisions.
“Petal will have to revisit this, I would think probably in another 10 years or so," Marx said. "I think that there are some possibilities that Petal should re-look at going toward the interstate.”
“I know there are some issues with the Glendale Utility District there, but I think there’s some ways," Marx added. "If we had cooperation with other entities in the area, we might get that done, and I think Petal’s future needs to be one of growth toward the interstate and along the highways because that’s where cities grow.”