County supervisors voted unanimously Tuesday night to move ahead with plans to double the geographic size of Hillsboro.
Town leaders have said the expanded boundaries would better reflect the community and its history. Mayor Roger Vance said the change would help make the town more walkable, and would help with applying for several infrastructure grants. He dismissed any concern that the boundary line adjustment would allow Hillsboro to overtax its water system or build many new homes.
“The real thing we need is a firm boundary, so we need that, and we need that in a timely fashion,” Vance said.
County staff members agreed that even with the expanded boundary, the town could not build any new houses without a change in zoning.
The county will now prepare an agreement with the town for an Oct. 12 public hearing.
Supervisor Suzanne M. Volpe (R-Algonkian), although she supported the motion, did have reservations.
“In all the attachments we had, there was nothing in there showing signatures of property owners,” Volpe said. “Before I vote on this, I want to know that the property owners want to come into the town.”
Jason Hobbie of the County Attorney’s Office said the town has gotten approval from all the affected property owners.
The county successfully lobbied the 2016 General Assembly to change state code to allow the boundary line adjustment to be completed with the county’s computerized geographic information system maps, rather than the traditional surveyed plats.
Hillsboro, for its part, has already begun work enrolling in the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s National Flood Insurance Program to avoid causing insurance problems for landowners whose property would be absorbed into the town.