Matlacha Civic Association issues response to Cape over annexation plan
Last month the Matlacha Civic Association received a response from the city of Cape Coral regarding the annexation of 6 acres of land in Matlacha. MCA holds the position that the annexation the City Council approved in December 2016, was illegal and filed a petition to reverse the Cape Coral council’s decision.
In the Oct. 6 “Petitioner’s Reply” to Cape Coral, the MCA stated that “The City fails to address our fundamental argument: the annexation statute is not intended to be used by a city to annex unincorporated lands by buying those lands in advance for the purpose of speculation.”
MCA’s position is that any Florida city must state the intended purpose of the proposed annexed property. The reply further states, “In our case Cape Coral admits these parcels were purchased in 2012 on speculation, and the goal of annexation is to up-zone the parcels for later sale. Such purchase and retention of property by a city is a pure entrepreneurial venture, expressly forbidden by Article VIII 2(b) of the Florida Constitution.”
MCA also takes the position that the annexed property is not contiguous to Cape Coral.
“Nor was anyone permitted to question the validity of the City cartoon map, which is inaccurate, because it fails to depict that the canal running east and west on the north side of the Property extends the entire length of the property, completely separating it from the preservation land to the north.”
“Cape Coral claims it can annex vacant land outside its boundaries without any explanation of what it intends to do with the land in the future. It is hard to believe that the City Council Members actually know what outlandish claims to power are being made by the City’s attorneys. Judge Keith R. Kyle will now decide whether the annexation is legal.”