Russell County files appeal in annexation lawsuit
By Toni Stauffer
Last month, the City of Phenix City won the annexation lawsuit brought by Russell County on Jan. 22, 2018. Decided by Judge Todd Derrick in Dothan, the lawsuit was an attempt by the county to reclaim territory lost to city annexations and to pull the city’s police jurisdictions back to corporate limits.
The Russell County Commission has decided to pursue an appeal on both the summary judgement and the city’s request for dismissal, in a case it views as a fight against Russell County citizens being taxed without representation, as well as theft of tax revenue.
“The legal team [Funderburk and Lane] felt it was in the best interest of the county to file the appeal with the Supreme Court to review the entire case, and so they went ahead and filed. Now the Supreme Court will hear it and make a determination,” LeAnn Horne, Russell County Administrator, said. “It’s unfortunate the city and the county are at this juncture. I enjoy working with city officials, and I enjoy working with the city manager. We’ve always had a very good relationship. Hopefully soon, there will be a resolve from the Supreme Court so that we can continue working together with clear boundaries and understanding of services.”
Correction: Previously, The Citizen reported under upcoming litigation that the city filed a lawsuit against the county regarding the county jail. The county filed the suit against the city.