Biloxi Got It, D'Iberville Wants It - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

01/27/04

Biloxi Got It, D'Iberville Wants It

When D'Iberville and Biloxi eyed the same ten miles to annex north of both cities, people who live in Wells Ferry Landing asked Biloxi to take them in.

Daniel Schroeder lives in the neighborhood.

"The City of Biloxi city limits are right down the road from us. They go all the way into Woolmarket, so Biloxi has grown this way. We're in the path of Biloxi's growth. D'Iberville would claim we're in the path of their growth. It's Biloxi city services... they have more to offer as far as fire department and police department."

His neighbor, Clay Gutierrez, agrees.

"Not that there's anything against D'Iberville, but most of the residents here have deep roots in Biloxi. Our businesses are in Biloxi, our families are in Biloxi, it's where our origins are, our voting interests and we prefer for it to lie in Biloxi."

In the 2002 annexation ruling, the judge added Wells Ferry to Biloxi's city limits.

"I figured whoever came out victorious that would be the end of it," Gutierrez says.

But not so. D'Iberville's mayor says Wells Ferry sits in the city's growth pattern, and more importantly, the mayor says, by giving Wells Ferry to Biloxi, the judge essentially let Biloxi trespass on D'Iberville's boundaries.

"Our western boundary lines stop right at the river that runs up through there and Hickman Road. So, if you take the boundary lines and proceed north, then what the judge actually did was take a small section of land and let Biloxi come in and intrude upon our natural boundaries. It's not right," says Mayor Rusty Quave.

"Everyone has the right to appeal an adverse decision and that's why they've done. The City of D'Iberville wants us. We chose the City of Biloxi," Shroeder says.

D'Iberville owns the water system that serves Wells Ferry citizens. Mayor Quave says if the Supreme Court decides Biloxi can annex the neighborhood, Biloxi will have to buy the system.

Biloxi Mayor A.J. Holloway sat in on the appeal hearing at the Supreme Court Tuesday. He told WLOX News he's confident in the city's position on the annexation of the area, and he hopes to get a decision from the court in three to six months.

byMarcia Hill

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