Renewed concern about Mount Olive annexation and proposed school district in Gardendale


Homeowners opposed to a portion of Mount Olive annexing into the city of Gardendale made their concerns heard Tuesday night.{}The meeting, attended by Gardendale's mayor, Senator Scott Beason, and other city and state leaders addressed concerns regarding Gardendale's proposed school district and the impact it would have on Mount Olive families whose children attend school in Gardendale.{}"A lot of grandparents were uncertain about the future of their grandchildren and where they might be attending school," said Stacey Allen.{}One of the main concerns we heard from homeowners is the financial implications annexation could have on them. Some were concerned it could raise their taxes. {}There were even questions about fire protection.{}" The issue is about where the children are going to go to school. And that's the only absolute is that they are in the city limits of Gardendale," said Othell Phillips, Mayor of Gardendale. {}Those who support annexation were not allowed in the meeting. {}They stood outside in the cold, with their signs, and voicing their position on annexation.{}"We don't have any firm understanding board of education yet on what our alternative zoning would be. But it would be for a school that's 15 to 20 minutes one way commute which is not ideal for any of us," said Tracy Calvery.{}Gardendale city leaders are hoping to kick start the new district during the 2015-2016 academic year. {}Mount Olive homeowners will ultimately have to decide whether or not to annex in Gardendale.{}