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How does a city typically annex a property?

The way property is annexed into a city differs based on a number of factors, but city-initiated annexation in Kern County does tend to follow some basic steps. First, the City Council or other appropriate bodies must decide on the annexation and file appropriate applications and documents with the Local Agency Formation Commission. Once that filing is done, the city and county, from where the property is being annexed, can negotiate the proper tax exchange.

The property is not automatically annexed simply because the proper paperwork was filed. The Local Agency Formation Commission will ensure everything is in order and then set a date for a public hearing and provide notice about that hearing. During the course of the hearing, both oral and written testimony can be heard both in favor or against the annexation. The proposal for annexation can then be modified, denied or approved.

Even upon approval, the process isn't over. The Local Agency Formation Commission will set a date for another hearing. This second public hearing is sometimes called the protest hearing; it allows individuals to speak against the annexation. Depending on how many written protests are received for this second hearing, the annexation might terminated, moved forward or sent for an election.

As you can see, it takes a great deal of legal and policy effort for a city to annex property. If you own commercial property in an area where an annexation might cause changes to how you do business, then you might want to work with a lawyer to understand how an annexation would impact you. You might also work to fight the annexation if that impact would be negative.

Source: Kern County Administrative Office, "A Citizen's Guide to Annexations by Cities," accessed Sep. 30, 2016

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