Two towns hope to consolidate after decades of waiting

Cities to annex college city
(Source: KAIT)
(Source: KAIT)
(Source: KAIT)
(Source: KAIT)

WALNUT RIDGE, AR (KAIT) - A day that has been talked about for decades finally happened on Tuesday in Walnut Ridge.

College City and Walnut Ridge mayors and town officials gathered to sign a petition to consolidate the two towns.

According to Walnut Ridge Mayor Charles Snapp, each city has to gather 15% of the number who voted in the last mayoral election.

That totals nine signatures for College City and 263 for Walnut Ridge.

College City Mayor Paul Rhoads said he has been overwhelmed with the things the town is not doing for itself anymore.

"Six years ago I was against this because I liked the small town feel," Rhoads said. "I'm for it now because we can't keep up on our own anymore. We don't have a tornado siren. We don't have a building inspector. Every time I turn around there is something new we are not doing."

Snapp said Walnut Ridge currently supplies the town with multiple services.

He said because of that it is only right for the two towns to finally become one.

"It will benefit the citizens by increasing the population of Walnut Ridge which puts us more attractive to new businesses," Snapp said.

Snapp said having the petition gives the residents a voice on what they want.

City officials from both towns knocked on doors Tuesday to get signatures.

Snapp said if they get the number of signatures they need, they will be verified by the Walnut Ridge city clerk.

An ordinance will then be presented to the city council calling for a special election as early as April.

Copyright 2016 KAIT. All rights reserved.

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