Whispering Oaks annexation OK'd

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

The Cape Girardeau City Council voted Monday to approve a petition to annex Whispering Oaks subdivision into city limits.

Largely disregarded though was a request from the subdivision's developer, Rodney Arnold, asking that 0.28 acres of that land not be included in the annexation.

This area contains the swimming pool and fitness center of Whispering Oaks, according to the council.

Arnold could not be reached for comment; he and his attorney were invited to the council meeting but did not attend. Council members were left to speculate about the reasons for the request.

"We have not heard any reason for this request, so legal council, staff, everyone feels we can move forward," with the annexation, said Mayor Jay Knudtson.

Arnold cannot stop the city from annexing this property having already signed a binding petition agreeing to it. In return, the city spent $457,000 to run sewer and water lines to Arnold's property and the surrounding area.

The 140-lot subdivision off of County Road 620 north of city limits has been in the news recently because of disagreements between Arnold and the residents.

Residents felt they were misled when Arnold petitioned the city in October to change zoning on some of his property to accommodated multi-family units.

Residents said Arnold promised them no development of this type would occur in the subdivision. Arnold claims never to have made such promises.

A resident of the subdivision who asked to remain anonymous saw the request presented at Monday's study session as the latest in a long line of strange occurrences.

"It has become a very strange environment to live in," said the resident.

The source added that the pool and fitness center in question are already leased out to a private company which oversees membership and provides maintenance.

tgreaney@semissourian.com

335-6611, extension 245

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