Penhold annexation area

Penhold annexation plans go to hearing

Municipal Government Board to hear objections to annexation from two landowners

Penhold’s plan to annex 1,320 acres from Red Deer County is going to a public hearing.

Both municipalities have reached an agreement on the proposed land swap; however, objections were filed by a pair of landowners, prompting the hearing before the Municipal Government Board.

“We just have a couple of landowners who are concerned about annexation,” said Kristina Schmidt, Penhold planner and development officer.

“The public hearing is open for them to speak to the board about it.”

The town and Red Deer County have collaborated on the annexation application and there are no outstanding issues, said Schmidt.

“There are no matters that were not agreed upon between the town and county. We worked well together and we are in agreement with the annexation proposal.”

The annexation covers a large swath of farmland, mostly west and northwest of the existing town boundaries.

Penhold Mayor Dennis Cooper said previously the fast-growing community — it grew 38 per cent to 3,300 people between 2011 and 2016 — wants to prepare for 30 to 50 years of growth.

Besides making room for residential growth, it is hoped the annexed lands attract more commercial and industrial investment in the town. About 96 per cent of town revenues come from residential taxation, a ratio the mayor would like to change.

The Municipal Government Board hearing is set to take place on Thursday beginning at 10 a.m. at the Penhold Multiplex.

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