CARY — The Town Council voted to scrap its plan to annex 10 separate areas around town, to the delight of those who gathered Thursday evening to protest it.
The council voted unanimously to suspend the plan just prior to a scheduled public comment period. Councilman Erv Portman said the economy, as well as the state legislature's review of annexation laws, weighed heavily in the decision.
The town's annexation plan was approved three years ago by an earlier council, when the economy looked brighter, Portman said. With annexation, homeowners face increased property taxes as well as the cost to connect to the town's water and sewer system.
"In a tough time, that's a hard burden," he said.
In addition, with the legislature looking at the way property is annexed in the state, Portman said, it made sense to hold off on the annexation plan.
Prior to the meeting, about 100 people gathered outside town hall to protest the plan, said Cathy Heath of stopNCannexation.com, who was pleased with council's decision.
"I was very happy that they looked at reason and said, 'This is not a good idea,'" Heath said.
The initial phase of the annexation plan included about 160 homes, including some near Carpenter Upchurch, Jenks Carpenter and Reedy Creek roads.