The Manassas City Council is expected to approve a complex annexation plan in the next few weeks that could bring 1,300 acres and 116 households inside the city limits.
The annexation must be approved by Prince William County and does not becoming binding until the Virginia General Assembly passes legislation giving towns and counties power to negotiate annexation contracts out of court. Leesburg, which is planning to annex seven acres of Loudoun County land, is seeking the same authority.
Under the Manassas plan, the city will annex the Manassas municipal airport, which it owns, a 242-acre, industrial-zoned tract between the airport and city and other parcels around the city's edge.
The county will get 45 acres of commercial land, a 20 percent share in the airport and a pledge from Manassas that it will not annex more land for at least 10 years. An industrial area just outside Manassas, considered critical by the county in its efforts to bolster the tax base, will be ineligible for annexation for 25 years.
Prince William County Supervisor Kathleen Seefeldt admitted that the city was the real winner in the plan. "The advantage to the county is that 10 years will give us time to provide the area around Manassas with services, which will strengthen our position if the city tries to annex land in the future," she said.
The city also will buy the majority of the Greater Manassas Sanitary District, and the county will purchase $2.5 million of water from the city's reservoir, Lake Manassas.
"The majority of the City Council is very pleased with the plan," Manassas Vice Mayor Steward Vetter said. "Both the county and city will benefit from it."