The Conway City Council will review an annexation study during a committee meeting at 5:30 p.m. Tuesday in the Judge "Jack" Roberts District Court Building.
The meeting will be followed by the council's regular meeting at 6:30 in the same location, and both are open to the public.
The city's Planning and Development Department worked with Conway Corporation to conduct the study after the council raised several questions about analysis applied to vetting annexations during its meeting on March 26.
The study's key findings, according to the agenda packet, include:
• The city should amend its policies regarding the provision and availability of utility service outside city limits.
"Currently, Conway Corporation is limited to providing utility service inside city limits except for extraordinary reasons. This policy has served the city well," the report reads in part. "However, Conway’s outward growth continually places it at the boundary of surrounding rural water districts. If Conway Corporation were allowed to provide water service outside city limits, it could help provide a buffer for the city from encroachment by rural water districts."
• The city should begin requiring additional analysis of annexation requests prior to approval by the City Council.
"Not all annexation requests are advantageous for the city of Conway. Annexation can have short and long term financial impacts on the city and its municipally owned utility provider," the report states. "Outward expansion can lead to sprawl that makes the provision of city utilities and services less cost efficient, necessitating high Committee Meeting tax rates and rates for residents and utility customers. However, annexations can also strategically position the city for future growth or control important infrastructure such interstate interchanges. The Planning Department recommends that thorough analysis be conducted for all future annexation requests."
• The city should review the 2016 South Interchange/Western Loop Annexation Analysis.
"Annexation of the area surrounding the Baker-Wills Parkway Interchange is critically important to the future of Conway both in defining the city’s southern gateway and as an important future development area," the report states. "However, it was clear from the study an ambitious annexation of the area was not in the best financial interest to the city or Conway Corporation. The city should examine possible smaller scale voluntary annexations in the area to allow Conway to become contiguous to the area surrounding the interchange and existing portions of Baker-Wills Parkway. Doing so would likely spur additional properties to annex and allow a more incremental and cost feasible approach to exercising control of the area."
To view the agenda packet in full, visit conwayarkansas.gov.