In March 2023, Butler Township was informed that the City of Union has submitted three more petitions to annex parts of the township. They include 2.237 acres of right-of-way along Frederick Pike and Old Springfield Road; .897 acres on Old Springfield Road; and 86.248 acres on Peters Pike and adjacent portions of right-of-way on Peters Pike, Count Line Road and Lightner Road.
Township officials attended the annexation hearing and presented objections pertaining to the 86.248-acre annexation filed by the City of Union. The hearing was held by the Montgomery County Commissioners on May 23, 2023, at 1:30 p.m. Commissioners will provide a decision regarding the annexation within thirty days of the hearing.
Annexation is constant struggle for Ohio’s 1,308 townships. Butler Township is no exception: thousands of acres have been annexed from Butler Township over the past several decades.
In most cases, annexation makes it impossible for the Township to promote orderly, resident-friendly development because the development is no longer under our jurisdiction. Annexation is often pursued by a landowner to circumvent Township zoning restrictions or pursue City utilities or services. Annexation also deprives the Township of tax revenue through new development – which is particularly problematic given that townships, unlike other forms of local government, have very limited funding streams.
Ohio law makes townships powerless to stop annexation, but that hasn’t prevented Butler Township from seeking ways to mitigate its impact. The key is collaboration. Our work with the cities of Dayton and Vandalia are great examples.
Dayton, Vandalia and Butler Township already have Joint Economic Development Districts (JEDDs), so collaborating with regard to new development is a logical extension. Through these agreements, we have worked together on developments and infrastructure improvements to ensure the needs of each jurisdiction are taken into account, and agreed to revenue sharing plans to protect Township boundaries in cases where annexation has been sought. While Butler Township would still rather not have its land annexed, this type of collaboration represents a next-best-scenario.
Often times, however, the acquiring jurisdiction does not include the Township in its planning and opts not to work together. That is the worst-case-scenario. Even in that situation, the Township has been able to limit annexation to some extent through its work with Dayton and Vandalia.
Thankfully, there isn’t much land left to be annexed in this fashion. The Township will keep you apprised on annexation situations as they arise and will continue to encourage collaboration with our neighbors, whenever possible.