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The Big Squeeze

POSTED: Tuesday, April 6, 2010 - 8:45pm

UPDATED: Thursday, April 22, 2010 - 1:48am

Everytime one city grows, nearby cities get squeezed, and that is happening now with Tyler and Lindale.

And Lindale is taking steps to protect itself.

A couple of years ago, Tyler decided not to wait for the 2010 census going on now.

They were sure they’d reached a population of 100,000 and so they conducted their own.

The results were controversial, to say the least.

Now, any city that is well run and financially stable is going to grow…is going to expand. But in the case of Tyler, that expansion is starting to worry some of its neighbors.

That’s because of something called Extra Territorial Jurisdiction, or ETJ.

The ETJ is an area outside your city limits that you essentially control, but are not responsible for in terms of fire or police or water service.

It’s there for future annexation.

When Tyler decided it had hit 100,000, no matter what the feds said, its ETJ went from 3 miles to 5.

And when Tyler unilaterally announced it had reached the 100,000 mark, many other city leaders were taken aback, like Lindale Mayor Jim Mallory.

“When it was announced,” Mallory says, “I was a little bit upset about it because I couldn’t really understand how they got to that number. However, there’s not a great deal we can do about it.”

And now Tyler has formally annexed an area just past Tyler Pipe.

“And that will come out at Jim Hogg road at 69,” Mallory told us. “Which is a major road to a lot of folks in Lindale.”

They hope to entice enough landowners to voluntarily sign with Lindale to block any Tyler move in the future.

“If we have extended our ETJ anywhere in that area then they cannot go over that, they can go around it,” the Mayor explained “To protect the land, but also, to give people a choice of whose ETJ they want to be in. so that everybody has a choice. People that don’t have a choice, they kind of get mad about things.”

The landowners in question are on the east side of Lindale where they hope to block any Tyler expansion.

And the city is actively reaching out to them now.

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