Missouri City Council gave the green light for the annexation of Sienna Municipal Utility District No. 2, a master-planned community, following an extensive series of hearings and discussions.

The annexation will require the city to accommodate and provide services for 6,000 new citizens, according to City Council documents.

The details

The decision, approved with a 5-2 majority vote, marks the end of a process that included multiple public hearings, consultations and comprehensive reviews of the proposed annexation's implications.

The annexation proposal, presented by Jennifer Thomas Gomez, the Missouri City director of development services, falls under the purview of the strategic partnership agreement established between the city of Missouri City and MUD 2 in 2001.

Residents in the annexed area will have access to a range of supplemental services at a to-be-determined date, according to the city presentation, available for a monthly fee of $25 that will include:
  • Drainage discounts
  • Sidewalk maintenance
  • Street upkeep
  • Traffic enforcement
  • A dedicated police department liaison
  • A license plate recognition system
  • Daily drone operations
  • Code enforcement
  • Emergency management
Property tax exemptions were also discussed during the proceedings, offering benefits to specific groups both within the newly annexed district and the broader city limits, such as individuals over age 65 and disabled persons, according to the City Council presentation.

Exemptions for those over age 65 will be equal to those living in Missouri City’s city limits, set at $25,000. Disabled persons’ exemptions in MUD 2 will be set at $25,000 yet will remain at $20,000 for those within Missouri City outside of the newly annexed district, according to the presentation.

Furthermore, residential homestead tax exemption percentages are undetermined for MUD 2 yet will remain at 2.5% for Missouri City resident; this equates to $10,811 based on the average price of homes within the city, according to the presentation.

What City Council members are saying

During the deliberations, concerns surfaced regarding the timing of the annexation, service equity issues and public safety considerations.

Council Member Jeffrey Boney expressed reservations about the annexation, citing concerns about the integration of Sienna MUD 2's debt, the potential for residents to continue paying taxes for MUD 2 services, and internal challenges facing the city.

“I voted no on the last hearing on this, not to annexation, but to annexation right now,” Boney said.

Boney also raised questions about redistricting and demographic breakdowns in relation to the Voting Rights Act. The Voting Rights Act of 1965 is federal legislation established to prohibit racial discrimination in the voting system within the United States, according to the U.S. National Archives.

“We had an analysis performed by an outside consultant focused on redistricting that has not been done here,” Boney said. “We have not determined the demographic breakdown and how it relates to the compliance of the Voting Rights Act.”

What the police are saying

City officials, including interim police Chief Brandon Harris, expressed confidence in the city's preparedness to accommodate the approximately 6,000 new residents that the annexation will bring. Harris said the city had been actively preparing for the annexation, ensuring resources and personnel were aligned to handle the increased population.

“Adding 6,000 residents, while it will be challenging, we are still prepared. When I first heard of the annexation possibility, we started preparing,” Harris said.

Quote of note

“There is a transition plan in place for the MUD; the MUD doesn't dissolve instantaneously, so there are steps that will take place over the next following months in regards to that transition,” Thomas Gomez said.