If the BOE goes along with a proposal by Carrington Estates residents to seek annexation into Trussville, the St. Clair County School System could lose 20 to 30 students and revenue from the 3-mill district tax.
For the students, it would mean that all those in the neighborhood would attend the same schools. Now, some go to St. Clair County schools and some go to Trussville schools. Those who now attend St. Clair schools would have to change, but for elementary school students, in particular, that would allow them to attend a school much closer to their homes.
This is not the first time the issue has come up. Years ago, when Carrington Estates was first being developed, the number of students and the tax base of the neighborhood were so small that the BOE decided not to act. Now, however, the decision is not so clear cut, with more students and more tax dollars at stake.
A local amendment to the state Constitution prohibits Trussville from annexing in St. Clair County without a countywide referendum. The annexation would have to be done through an act of the Legislature, and opinions differ as to whether that would be legal or constitutional.
St. Clair County possibly could fight the annexation on constitutional grounds, once the bill passed, BOE attorney William Trussell said, but state Rep. James McClendon, of Springville, said he would not introduce the annexation bill until the city of Trussville and the St. Clair BOE reached an agreement.
This is a wise decision on McClendon’s part. It’s much better to fight it out here than in Montgomery. It suggests, however, that to kill the effort, all the BOE has to do is sit on its collective hands, as it did the first time.
The question for the BOE, however, is how to best serve the interests of the students.