Welcome to the School of Government's Annexation microsite.  North Carolina has three statutory methods of municipal annexation. They are: 1. Voluntary annexation of contiguous areas (G.S. 160A-31 and -31.1). 2. Voluntary annexation of noncontiguous areas (G.S. 160A-58 through -58.8). 3. Involuntary annexation of contiguous areas, subject to urban development standards, mandatory service provisions, and a referendum requiring approval by a majority of voters in the area to be annexed (G.S. 160A - 58.50 through - 58.63). In addition, the General Assembly retains the power to annex territory to a city. (Only the General Assembly has authority to deannex, or remove, property from a city.) The two voluntary annexation procedures are relatively noncontroversial. Involuntary annexation has been controversial and was significantly reformed in 2011 and 2012. This website provides information on how the various annexation procedures work, on the historical development of annexation legislation in North Carolina, on the policy arguments in favor of and in opposition to the involuntary annexation procedures, and on recent annexation legislation, modifying the involuntary annexation authority. There is also a link to a short report that compares annexation procedures nationally.

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