Manchester City Council meeting draws annexation protesters

MANCHESTER, Ky. (WYMT) - Dozens of people came to the Manchester City Council meeting tonight to protest, after talk of an annexation plan that includes areas north of the city. People there said they are worried they will have to pay more taxes if where they live becomes part of the City of Manchester. City officials say they have only discussed annexation, and no formal steps to do so have been taken.

A big crowd that even included former legendary coach Bobby Keith came to the Manchester City Council meeting Tuesday night, and the topic of annexation was on everybody's mind.

"They want our money, and that's the main issue," said Greenbriar resident Ben Carnahan. "Property tax, it's just money."

The city council floated the idea earlier this month of annexing portions of Clay County north of the city. The mayor says the idea was to increase the city's population.

"More population gives you more state aid, road funds and all that stuff, but you still got... makes you eligible for more grants," said Manchester Mayor George Saylor.

Even though the City of Manchester has taken no official steps towards annexation, well over 100 people showed up at Tuesday night's city council meeting to protest the move. Protesters say they would rather live independent of the city.

"We've got city water, we've got our own sewer system, and we've got police protection, and they could just never tell us anything that they could offer us for our tax money," said Grace Hall, who also lives in Greenbriar.

No citizens spoke in favor of annexation. Only time will tell if Manchester officials move forward with any annexation plans. The mayor says any plans to annex land into the city would require two public hearings for public inquiry. He estimates it would be at least a year before such a plan could be put into motion.

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