Annexation Worries River Valley Community

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Residents in a River Valley community fear they'll be annexed into one of two cities. The Jenny Lind community got together Tuesday night (April 23) to organize a game plan to try to stop the annexation. They also weighed in on their possibilities with legal council as to what their options are down the road.

Shannon Foster, an attorney at the meeting, explained that homeowners need to understand just how much of a say they should get in the process.

"There have been some rumblings that Greenwood is trying to annex Jenny Lind," Foster explained. Also, with having Fort Smith so close by, that's also a possibility."

Although residents said they've heard rumors about annexation, the Director of Planning for Greenwood, Sonny Bell, said annexation hasn't even been brought up in Greenwood. "

"There have been no lines drawn," Bell said. "There have been no plans made to annex anybody. Its just too early in the process to start drawing lines and saying we have plans of any kind."

Bell explained that there has been an annexation committee formed in Greenwood to look at options for expansion 20 to 30 years down the road. However, he also said that the committee has only had one meeting, and has not had time to make any sort of plans for either the short-term or long-term.

Those in the community, already balancing the pros and cons that each city has to offer.

"I'd like for Jenny Lind to stay Jenny Lind if at all possible," said resident Mike Robison. "But if not, Fort Smith could do so much more for us in the Jenny Lind community than Greenwood will ever even think about doing."

Bell suggested that Jenny Lind residents begin attending Greenwood's Annexation Committee's meetings to ask questions or raise their concerns. The committee's next meeting is scheduled for Thursday (April 25) at 6 at Greenwood's City Hall.

If any sort of annexation order were to be passed, the decision would be left up to voters during a special election, according to Foster.

Group leaders have established an email address for the public to send their concerns. That email address is