North Carolina House Bill 524 (2009)
North Carolina House Bill 524 includes a provision that allows residents to vote on a proposed involuntary municipal annexation if a petition with signatures from 15 percent of the registered voters living in the city limits and in the area targeted for involuntary annexation is filed.
HB 524 passed a third reading in the North Carolina House of Representatives on July 23, 2009.
Opponents of forced annexation say that HB 524 requires too many signatures. Stephen LaRoque of the Good Neighbors of Kinston said that "It's putting an unnecessary burden on victims of forced annexation, to make them go out and get more signatures than what's required for a candidate to be placed on a ballot or a referendum." Good Neighbors of Kingston is a group that arose to oppose Kinston's annexation of Crestview. Candidates for public office need signatures equalling 4% of registered voters, while signatures equalling 10% of registered voters are required for a city initiative.
Supporters of forced annexation include:
- Joe Hackney
- The North Carolina League of Municipalities.
The North Carolina League of Municipalities opposes HB 524 since it allows residents to vote on forced annexations.