Annexation rules

Friday, November 6, 2009

The planning commissions of Cape Girardeau and Jackson recently held a joint meeting to discuss issues of mutual concern. Among those issues was how subdivisions are developed outside each of the two cities.

Jackson and Cape Girardeau both have subdivisions requirements. Not all developers in unincorporated areas meet these requirements. From time to time property owners request to be annexed by one of the cities, and that's when a problem arises. Both cities want subdivisions to be in compliance when they are annexed.

The chairwoman of the Jackson Planning Commission, Mary Miller, suggested at the joint meeting that it would be worth considering an effort to develop county regulations that would be compatible with city requirements.

This is a worthwhile suggestion, but one that faces some hurdles. Even though it has been several years since Cape Girardeau County voters turned down a countywide planning and zoning proposition, most county officials are still gun-shy every time the topic comes up. While some have said they favor P&Z controls, they are reluctant to revisit this touchy issue.

As the county continues to gain population -- and development -- it seems only prudent to consider ways to promote the kind of growth both cities would be willing to annex.

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