Community

City of Langley rejects land annexation

LANGLEY — The Langley City Council shot down an annexation request by Robert and Bonnie Arndt at the council’s meeting Wednesday.

The Arndts had asked to get the city’s OK to submit an annexation petition for their two parcels that total about 11 acres on the north side of Maxwelton Road near the Woodman Cemetery.

They want to build a home on one of the parcels and because the property is within the urban growth area, they are required to annex the land.

The couple was not heartbroken over the rejection, however, because they can now seek a building permit from the county. Had the city allowed the annexation, the Arndts would have faced another hurdle: Langley’s ongoing moratorium against new construction.

The city’s planning staff recommended rejecting the annexation proposal.

“We’re not in favor of the annexation at this time,” said city planning chief Larry Cort.

He said staff acknowledged the tension between annexing properties in Langley’s urban growth area into the city at a time when rules that guide how Langley will look in the future are still crafted, Cort said.

Six months ago, the city turned down a similar request, he said. The council rejected the proposal at the time because the work on the city’s growth plan and the ongoing moratorium would have made it impossible to craft a development agreement.

Councilman Robert Gilman said even though the Arndts didn’t really want to be annexed, he wouldn’t have been in favor of the proposal, anyway.

“Given the planning changes we’re in the midst of, the city should not take on annexations at this time,” Gilman said.

Councilwoman Rene Neff said the city is busy with the ongoing development issues.

“We shouldn’t take on more than we already have,” she said.

Michaela Marx Wheatley can be reached at 221-5300 or mmarxwheatley@southwhidbeyrecord.com.

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