Why Do We Need A City Of Kingsbury?
Frequently asked questions about incorporating Kingsbury as a municipality.
Why do we even need to incorporate a City of Kingsbury?
The reasons we need to incorporate a City of Kinsgbury are related to how we live our lives now. It will allow us as a city to control our own destiny and not be absorbed in the next several years by Seguin. By incorporating a City of Kingsbury, we could not be annexed by Seguin or anyone else, and each citizen would have a say in how the new city would be governed.
Does Seguin Want to Annex Us?
Although Seguin has no official annexation plan, conversations with Seguin officials make clear that at some point they will eventually annex in the areas that they consider to be in their extra-territorial jurisdiction (ETJ). They already have legally questionable annexations along interstate 10 East and up SH 130 that have no correlation to population or a need for their city’s services, but they have annexed that for what they believe are their future needs. This places Kingsbury directly in their future annexation areas.
What is an Extra-Territorial Jurisdiction?
An extra-territorial jurisdiction or ETJ, is an area beyond a city’s official city limits that they still have control over. It is an area that they may annex without further consultation to the persons who reside in the ETJ. They can impose regulations and prevent that area from being annexed by another city or incorporating into its own city. To be released from the ETJ requires their city councils’ permission and is unlikely to be granted.
Why Would Seguin Want to Annex Us?
There are several reasons that make our Kingsbury of interest to Seguin. The first would be that they could impose their very high tax rate on us without our consent. We would be paying for their city’s needs and not our own. They would be able to impose regulations and codes that we do not want that would drastically impact the way we live our lives now. We also reside on the highest elevation of ground in their surrounding area, which could make us a possible location for a future waste-water treatment plant for industry that could move in along the SH 130 corridor.
Won’t A New City of Kingsbury Tax or Regulate Me?
Every City is required to have a set of codes and regulations. The key difference is that Kingsbury is being founded with a mission of ‘less is more’. We will only have the minimum required codes mandated by the state. This will preserve our way of life and not make us subject to Seguin which is miles away from where we live. Taxes are an unavoidable part of life, however, we will not be subject to Seguin’s very high tax rate. The majority of the roads in the new City of Kingsbury are state or county roads, which minimizes our need for funding to maintain the roads. Also, utility bills have a fee that you already pay that goes directly to the utility provider. Once the City of Kingsbury incorporates, those fees would go to the new City, providing a source of revenue and allowing any tax rate to be extremely low or, possibly not needed. Again, as our own City, you will have a vote in any taxation or regulation up for consideration and that means a direct say in how your City government works.
If the Downtown of Historic Kingsbury is Already in Seguins’ ETJ, Why Incorporate a City of Kingsbury at All?
Incorporating a City of Kingsbury in non-Seguin ETJ areas allows the name of Kingsbury to be preserved and blocks any further intrusion into our lives by a city miles away from us and indifferent to what we want. It also allows us to provide city government to those in the historic downtown of Kingsbury and areas immediately to the west that want to petition the City of Seguin for release from their ETJ so that they may join the City of Kingsbury. Seguin’s city council does have the ability to grant this request and a drive to gather all interested parties for that request is underway.
Can the State Do Anything To Help Us?
YES! The legislature is currently considering a ‘liberty city’ bill. This would allow areas that are currently ‘hostage’ in another city’s ETJ to incorporate for the purpose of having a minimal government city. The concept is identical to what we are trying to accomplish with the new City of Kingsbury—less government intrusion and taxation and more citizen representation. It is bill SB710 and is sponsored by Senator Konni Burton. If you support this bill, please take a moment and contact your representative or the sponsor of the bill and let them know your support. A copy of the bill can also be found at https://legiscan.com/TX/bill/SB710/2015.