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District 'cautiously optimistic' on annexation vote

Sherwood Schools will use the land for a new middle and elementary school

Sherwood Schools Superintendent Dan Jamison told city council in March that he is 'cautiously optimistic' the annexation vote on land for new schools will pass in May.

But since Sherwood's charter requires that the majority of those being annexed in - 18 properties in Sherwood's case - must approve the move, he admitted it's not a done deal.

Several landowners have already expressed their desire to be included in the annexation of Area 59, the name given to the portion of land to be annexed. However, two landowners at a March city council meeting came to ask that their land, or at least the portion of it not being used for a school, be left out of the city. The city and school district's desire had been to annex all of the property designated in Area 59, rather than dividing it up piecemeal.

Lowell Labahn, whose family lives in one of the parcels set for annexation, was adamant that he be left out.

'I don't like the city, I don't want to be a part of the city, I don't like what you did to the downtown,' he told council.

Ken Rychlick, whose family owns property to be annexed, also asked that the portion of his land that is not condemned for the school site be left out of the city.

City officials said it was more efficient and logical to annex the entire area, as the zoning will change, and pointed out that if the landowners do not develop the land, they will not be forced to tie into city water and sewer. If landowners seek to redevelop their land, they would be required to abide by city standards.

Landowners would also be subject to a tax increase by being in the city rather than unincorporated Washington County.

Council voted unanimously to approve putting the Area 59 annexation on the ballot.

Area 59 is made up of several parcels of land bound by Edy Road, Elwert Road and Ladyfern Park. For a map of the area, and the full Area 59 plan, visit www.ci.sherwood.or.us/city_boards/area_59/index.html, and click on revised concept plan.