NORTH PORT — The Wellen Park homeowner group has received a ruling from a Sarasota Circut judge in the continuing dispute with the city of North Port. The ongoing controversy has been the subject of boundaries and taxes for former West Villages developments.
Today Judge Hunter Carroll overruled the prior North Port decision. The city had denied de-annexation of what was formerly the West Villages development. The section of neighborhoods on Rt. 41 includes the Atlanta Braves stadium. The area was renamed Wellen Park last year.
Last April North Port held a public hearing on whether to grant de-annexation after West Villagers for Responsible Government petitioned the city for the separation. The group based their request on issues such as a 13% property tax hike and financially issues with the city. The city denied the request and the group appealed.
Carroll’s ruling Monday included a 20-page finding listing several reasons for granting the West Villagers’ appeal and rejected out the city’s decision.
North Port can appeal the judges decision or grant the petition. The third option is to hold a vote in Wellen Park, where homeowners would decide to remove themselves from North Port and become part of unincorporated Sarasota County.