The May 2007 annexation that allowed up to 1,075 homes in Peachtree City’s West Village is null and void because it violated Georgia law, the Georgia Court of Appeals has ruled.
That means the land will revert back to its original jurisdiction of being in unincorporated Fayette County, with the county’s zoning.
And the city’s conceptual approval of 475 single family homes and a 662-unit age restricted senior subdivision for the property also is null and void.
The case was brought by Peachtree resident and attorney David Worley in June 2007, a month after the City Council voted to annex the property. Worley charged the annexation left an unincorporated island in the midst of city territory, a violation of state law.
The appeals court ruling also endangers the extension of MacDuff Parkway, which was to be funded in a joint effort between John Wieland Homes and initially Levitt and Sons before that company bowed out of the project. The Levitt property is still under the control of Fayetteville developer Brent Scarborough, who previously had announced plans to seek other companies to build the senior housing component.
Wieland and Scarborough could still file an annexation request with the city at a future point, but there’s no further action for the city to take at this point, said Mayor Don Haddix. But with the court’s ruling, the land is no longer a part of the city and reverts back to being in the jurisdiction of unincorporated Fayette County.
Several current City Council members, when seeking election, have said large-scale residential annexations such as the one in question are detrimental and too costly to the city. Haddix said he too opposed the annexation because at the time “it didn’t make sense.”
And now, in today’s economy, if anything it makes even less sense, Haddix said.
The initial annexation vote for both properties in 2007 was 3-2 with Mayor Harold Logsdon and council members Steve Boone and Cyndi Plunkett in favor and council members Judi-ann Rutherford and Stuart Kourajian voting against.
Worley initially lost a trial court ruling but appealed and won a unanimous 3-0 reversal from the Court of Appeals. The court also included in its July 9 ruling for Worley “an injunction against the city for any actions flowing from the void annexation.”
That effectively stops all city-connected activity within the voided annexed property.