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Legislature passes annexation request

By By Connie Nowlin Managing editor
A group of Atmore leaders and business people attended a legislative hearing in Montgomery on the city's annexation request.
That request, heard Wednesday, was approved and forwarded to the Senate for its action. The land in question is 645 acres at 1-65 the city had purchased for development as an industrial park. The proposed name for the development is Atmore I-65 Business Park.
Mayor Howard Shell got word via e-mail Thursday that the Senate had approved the request, so development of the property could move ahead.
"It's a done deal, at least that is what the e-mail told me," Shell said. "We will continue to do infrastructure work and will sign the contracts for the grants that have been awarded."
Those dollars are grant money and $ 500,000 in appropriations, awarded in July and September, for road work at the entrances and water and sewer facilities.
Shell said the engineering is being done, and when the engineers come up with a design, it will go out on bid.
Meanwhile, work is also being done to connect the industrial park on Highway 31 to Jack Springs Road. The name for that park is simply the Atmore Industrial Park.
"We'll just take it one step at a time," Shell said.
The city also annexed property at the airport so that work could commence on improvements there, funded by an FAA grant of $150,000.
Not everyone is pleased with the annexation of the property into the city.
Joe Terry, who owns a business near the proposed business park, has voiced his opposition to the development and the annexation of the land. He and his family are concerned that the next step for the city is to annex the homes and businesses now between the two parcels of Atmore city limits.
Shell has said consistently that the city has no plans to annex any of those homes and businesses, although the Atmore campus of Jefferson Davis Community College was part of the annexation requested. That, Shell said, was because the college asked to be part of the request.