Danville commissioners have decided to bring the city to its manager as a way to abide by the requirement he live in the city limits.
At Monday evening’s City Commission meeting, City Manager Ron Scott and his wife, Janis Scott, addressed the commission “as may any citizen” to request annexation of their property.
Scott said he thinks the voluntary annexation of their property of 20 years would be an asset to Danville.
“It’s an asset already,” Scott said. “As providing entry into Danville.”
City Attorney Stephen Dexter said cities usually annex areas with larger amounts of people, but with a voluntary annexation, there is a much smoother process.
“Financially, there is not a downside to annexing,” Dexter said but added there can be political issues.
Commissioner James “J.H.” Atkins chimed in saying he knew what the political effects could be.
Atkins said there were 12 applicants for city manager to choose from, and although it’s nothing personal, he is opposed to the annexation of the Scotts’ property.
“Requirement was that you must live in the city,” Atkins said. “Ron knows where I stand.”
But Dexter said an elected official has a certain time frame in which to move into the city limits, though there was some confusion over how long the time frame is.
Commissioner Paul Smiley said the annexation was the “common sense alternative way to proceed with the current city manager we have.”
“I’d like to see what happens in the future in the best interest of Danville,” Smiley said. “We should not look for someone else.”
In addition to the scenic value of the Scotts’ property, it was discussed how the property taxes would be beneficial to the city.
Commissioner Kevin Caudill said this isn’t the first case he recalls of “bringing the city to him” instead of “bringing him to the city.”
“It may be going around the barn, but it is best to be done,” Caudill said.
The commission discussed that Scott had served as the interim city manager during the hiring process, and Mayor Bernie Hunstad said Scott’s residence had been discussed during that time in executive session, so it wasn’t a surprise.
Hunstad said Scott is a hard worker, qualified, and he doesn’t know anyone else who would have accepted Scott’s contract.
“Danville has not had a finer city manager than the one we currently have,” Hunstad said.