UNION — The City of Union has moved to block the annexation of 157 acres agreed to between the City of Dayton and Butler Township.
The Union City Council voted unanimously on Monday evening to “oppose and objects to the subsequent annexation of approximately 157.234 acres owned by the City of Dayton to the Dayton International Airport.”
The resolution was not on the council’s agenda but was added during the meeting.
The move comes just days after Union filed two annexation petitions seeking to acquire over 500 acres of land from Butler Township. The City of Dayton owns over 70% of that annexation proposal.
In its resolution, Union says the 157 acres “is not necessary to the continued operation of the international airport and fails to meet the statutory criteria for annexation.”
It directs the city’s administration to file the necessary paperwork with the Montgomery County Commissioners.
Butler Township Administrator Erika Vogel disagrees.
“We believe the annexation of the territory included in the City of Dayton’s annexation petition is in fact ‘necessary to the continued operation of the airport,’” Vogel wrote in an email. “We are also confident that the Board of County Commissioners will find that it is necessary and therefore will authorize and grant the City of Dayton’s annexation petition under Ohio Revised Code Section 709.16.”
The Butler Township Trustees consented to Dayton’s annexation earlier this month with one Trustee calling Dayton “a much friendlier neighbor than the City of Union.”
The trustees also expressed concern that if Union annexed the parcel that an existing Joint Economic Development Zone with the City of Dayton could be litigated and potentially eliminated.
Board of Trustees President Mike Lang expressed dismay at Union’s latest move.
“From a substantive standpoint, we will refer to the City of Dayton who initiated the action since it brings into a question of law that doesn’t involve the township,” said Lang. With that said, it’s unfortunate it has to come to this: A fight over undeveloped land versus regional cooperation for the betterment of all involved.”
Reach Darrell 937-684-8983 or on Twitter @VandaliaDrummer