One of the many concerns brought up during the Vandalia Lake Committee’s informational meeting this past Saturday at Vandalia City Hall was that of contiguous property to allow an annexation of the city’s leased lake lots into the city. Responding to a question on if the city could just do an annexation without input from residents, Mayor Gottman stated they would have to have a majority of lake residents approve and would also have to have the contiguous property approve to do an annexation.
And Mayor Gottman later in the meeting providing land examples of contiguous property.
One common question asked by a few residents was whether or not it would be possible to just buy out the land from the city. Lake resident Donna Johnson asked if that happened how would it would be decided what was the value of the land. Alderman Mike Hobler stated that the land would probably have to be surveyed but they had not gotten that far yet and alderman Andy Lester shared his impression that annexation could be a tool to make turning the property over to the lake residents an easier process due to property being public land and the original lease agreement being very complicated.
And lake resident Harold Palmer asked if the city had ever looked at the potential cost of the property being bought out before and Mayor Gottman relayed that the city had not as they did not want to spend money on the legal counsel until knowing what the residents would want done.
Throughout the meeting there were some questions the mayor and council members could not answer to which Mayor Gottman stated they would get with legal counsel to get answers and get back to the lake residents. He also left open the possibility of another meeting to further answer the questions posed once they had full answers.