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Rosemount City Council mulls possible annexation

A unique request has the Rosemount City Council asking some big questions. During the council’s last work session, Tom Furlong asked the council to consider annexing his property from Nininger Township. Furlong owns 415 acres in the township, including the Emerald Greens Golf Course.

According to a Rosemount staff memo, Furlong wants build an RV park and townhomes on his property. The zoning of his property in Nininger Township does not permit the type of development Furlong would like to undertake.

The land is zoned for agricultural uses in accordance with the Metropolitan Council’s requirements, said Bob Rotty, Nininger Town Board Chair.

Rotty said no requests for the project have been presented to the Nininger board and that he’s disappointed to hear that Furlong brought up annexation with Rosemount.

“We definitely don’t like to see it,” said Rotty. As of Monday afternoon, Rotty said he has not been contacted by the city of Rosemount about the issue.

While it’s in the very preliminary stages, city administrator Dwight Johnson said city staff will explore the possibility of annexing the property. He said there are a number of implications to consider, including financial and land issues.

The estimated market value of the Furlong properties is $5 million, according to the staff memo. In 2014, $75,000 will be collected in property taxes. The taxes collected are distributed between the State of Minnesota, Dakota County, the school district and the township.

The staff memo states that if the properties were annexed into Rosemount the city would likely receive between $30,000 and $35,000 in property taxes a year.

One issue that would need to be addressed is the how the property would be annexed in. Johnson said there are a number of individual parcels within the area that don’t belong to Furlong. He said the city would want some sort of consensus from the property owners in the area to avoid having pockets of the township within city property.

Rotty said he has fielded phone calls from some of those property owners and they are not in favor of the annexation.

“I don’t believe it will go over well,” said Rotty.

The annexation of land is not a simple process, said Johnson. The city council wants to fully look at what they could be getting into if they begin the process.

In the meanwhile, the council encouraged Furlong to work with his neighbors and the township to see if they can reach an agreement that satisfies all parties.

Johnson said the council has made it clear to Furlong that even if the city did annex his property no city water or sewer service would be offered in the area for years.

Rotty said he doesn’t feel as though the project or the annexation is realistic. The board will have that conversation when it comes to them, Rotty said.

Emily Zimmer
Emily Zimmer has worked as a staff writer for the Rosemount Town Pages since 2007. She has a degree in journalism from Minnesota State University, Mankato. Outside of work, Emily enjoys running, reading and gardening. You can follow Emily's gardening adventures at the Areavoices blog East of Weedin'
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