Town of Madison residents, business owners voice concerns over accelerated annexation

Published: Sep. 27, 2016 at 10:23 PM CDT
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TOWN OF MADISON, Wis. (WMTV) -- The town of Madison held a listening session tonight regarding an accelerated annexation of the town.

It all stems from a letter mayor Paul Soglin wrote, calling for the accelerated annexation of the town of Madison. There are already plans in place to transfer the town's land to the cities of Madison and Fitchburg in 2022, but the mayor calling for a 2017 dissolution has many concerned.

"We've been in business in the town of Madison for the last 22 years, so it's a concern to go into the city."

Tommy Hanna, owner of Mediterranean Hookah Lounge and Cafe, has a lot of concerns about the potential early annexation.

"I don't know if it's a lateral move, whether we'd be moving in as the same business," he explained, "You know, concerning our hookahs, or concerning our liquor license, concerning the taxes so those are question marks that we need to know."

The business owner isn't alone. Many residents worried about their property taxes, and police and fire services among other things.

"Is the real reason behind this is that the city wants to annex the town because they want to build the Alliant Energy Center?" asked one man.

Fitchburg Alder and Dane County supervisor Dorothy Krause says residents weren't the only ones left in the dark about what this could mean.

"I don't know what Madison mayor [Paul Soglin] had in his mind because he didn't give reasons in the letter for the early annexation proposal."

Krause reassuring that before any decision is made, both the cities of Fitchburg and Madison, and town of Madison, have a lot to discuss.

"I don't know what would change for people. That's all stuff that has to be explored and I think each city as well as the town will explore that in depth as time goes by."

The few supporters of the early annexation say it would be beneficial for the town, particularly to fix water issues, and for development purposes.

Copyright 2016: WMTV