Landowner still seeks annexation

JOHNSTOWN – A local landowner wants the town to reconsider its denial of an annexation that he said is needed for his project.

Jovan Boljanac, who has plans to build 11 single-family homes on land near Pine Avenue, is asking the town to allow the annexation process to go through, giving him access to city of Johnstown resources.

The annexation, which would move land from the town to the city of Johnstown, would permit Boljanac to receive city water and sewer services and fire and police protection for the residential development.

Boljanac planned to construct single-family homes that would sell for about $200,000 each at the end of Pine Avenue, near the Pleasant Avenue Elementary School.

Boljanac said in his petition that his engineer determined on-site septic systems and wells would “not be adequate or feasible.”

Town and city officials met in June at the Johnstown Town Hall to review Boljanac’s petition and hear the public’s comments.

The Johnstown Common Council approved the annexation, and was waiting on the town’s approval.

Town Supervisor Nancy MacVean said the town previously denied the annexation in the fall.

Boljanac said without the annexation process, he would only be able to build a few homes, rather than the 11 planned.

However, MacVean said buildings could still be put up in the area.

“We discussed it with the building inspector, and he said according to the R2 zone on a seven-acre parcel, [Boljanac] could add six or seven two-family houses or condos, so he wouldn’t have to settle,” MacVean said.

According to Town Attorney Cathi Radner, the town and the city would each need to determine if the annexation is in their best interest.

Radner said the town denied the annexation because the area would suffer environmentally.

A decision to reconsider the denial was not made Monday, Radner said.

“Well, I’ve witnessed a lot of annexations over the years, and I’m opposed to annexation. But I don’t want to sound like I’m a rockhead with no ability to bend. We could come up up with something, maybe we could come to terms,” MacVean said.

Attorney Carmel Greco, who represents Boljanac, said if the town does not reconsider its denial of the annexation, the next possible step would be to move the case to the Appellate Court.

However, Greco said, he cannot move the case to court. The city of Johnstown would have to move the case, he said.

Mayor Sarah Slingerland could not be reached this morning for comment.