HATTIESBURG, Miss. — Multiple groups are opposing Hattiesburg’s plan to expand its borders.
The board attorney for Rawls Springs Utility District, Robin Roberts, has filed court papers opposing the city’s move to take over land in Forrest and Lamar counties, including a busy commercial corridor along U.S. Highway 98.
Roberts said that under the law creating the utility district, the city must take the district’s entire service area, buy the district’s assets and take over its debts. But he said that so far, Hattiesburg has not conceded that position, The Hattiesburg American reported (http://hatne.ws/2cZU0nQ).
A group in another community also opposes Hattiesburg’s annexation, because expansion would interfere with the group’s plans to incorporate Bellevue as its own city.
The Lamar County Board of Supervisors, with attorneys Perry Phillips and Tim C. Holleman, filed papers April 28 in Lamar County Circuit Court to oppose the annexation. Attorney John Scanlon, representing Hattiesburg, filed a motion in June to dismiss the appeal.
Retired Chancery Judge Robert L. Lancaster of Columbus was appointed in July to preside over the annexation cases in both counties. A date for those cases has not been set.
Hattiesburg City Council President Carter Carroll told the newspaper he couldn’t comment on the matter because it is being challenged in court.
Information from: The Hattiesburg American, http://www.hattiesburgamerican.com