The Acreage Landowners’ Association met Monday, April 2 at the Indian Trail Improvement District office to discuss changes to its outdated Acreage Neighborhood Plan.
Discussion centered on whether to expand the plan to include certain properties such as Callery-Judge Grove.
ALA Director Jay Sweet told the board he’d like to see Callery-Judge included in the plan.
“There’s a good reason to do that,” he said. “They have an approved plan. They have this higher density, this town center if you will, that we can use depending on what our positions are on commercial.”
ALA Government Liaison Mike Erickson was concerned with the idea. “There’s a big difference in referencing it for non-residential elements,” he said, “and trying to incorporate it into the plan.”
Sweet said that the board would need to justify referencing Callery-Judge in the plan. “We have to be careful with it,” he said, “but it would be a separate element.”
Sweet noted that the ALA’s articles of incorporation say that its boundaries are the same as Indian Trail but that the proposed map in the plan is not the same.
Erickson was concerned that the board would be trying to expand the plan to include a lot of property, such as the Sluggett property at the corner of Southern Blvd. and Seminole Pratt Whitney Road, which is not an active unit in Indian Trail.
“I would highly recommend we get an approved, updated plan first,” he said, “and then we can go back in and talk about annexing all kinds of things. We can reference in the plan contiguous properties.”
But Sweet said that the plan should address the areas that ALA wants to include.
“Annexation into the plan is what you want,” he said. “You don’t want a plan with a spot here, spot here, spot here. By saying ‘we believe this should be part of our plan,’ I believe we’ll have better standing when they come before the county for approval on something.”
Sweet said that the county could then use the neighborhood plan to address the surrounding impact.
“We can’t make someone do something or not do something,” he said, “that is not in our jurisdiction. Even when it is in our jurisdiction, we are a very intense advisory committee. That’s what the plan does. It gives us some legal standing.”
Erickson suggested that the plan include wording that would bring active units under the ALA’s jurisdiction automatically.
“We can very much force and should force,” he said, “that once an area comes in as an active unit of development of Indian Trail, it automatically is incorporated into the plan. We should have that wording in there so we don’t have to go back and get approval.”
However, Callery-Judge isn’t inside the legislative boundaries of Indian Trail, Erickson noted. “And therefore, not anyone can actually be a member of the ALA from there,” he said. “That is a different element.”
Sweet said that a property owner could ask to become a member.
Erickson did agree with Sweet that Callery-Judge is the place to increase services in The Acreage.
“I think that’s the reason we can use it to our advantage,” Sweet said. “We can’t control what goes into Callery-Judge. But we can use what goes in there to control everything else.”
Currently, ALA bylaws say that a member must have joined three months prior to vote. Erickson suggested the board change it to allow recent members to vote on issues only, not elections.
“We could have free sign-ups at the meeting,” he said. “I don’t care about the money.”
Sweet said that the board could take a poll, noting that members must be property owners but that the issue affects everyone.
“It’s a better way to do it,” he said. “That way we don’t have to worry about property ownership.”
For more information on the Acreage Neighborhood Plan, visit www.acreagelandowners.org.