Local Government Clip Art Beta 1

BELTON — A new subdivision in far Southwest Bell County is now set to begin construction.

The Bell County Commissioners Court — in a unanimous decision on Monday — approved a final plat for the first phase of the Persimmon Springs development.

Owner Wesley Atkinson is developing Persimmon Springs off of FM 116, also known as Ivy Gap Road. It is in Bell County, but is located within Copperas Cove’s extraterritorial jurisdiction — the unincorporated area within two miles of city limits.

Bell County Engineer Bryan Neaves described the development as being a “pretty good size.”

This phase will have 39 lots over nearly 37 acres. This is about a third of the 94-acre tract that Persimmon Springs will occupy, according to city of Copperas Cove documents.

“It’s going to have some new county roads that they are going to propose for us to take over,” Neaves said.

Nearly one mile of road will be inside this phase of Persimmon Springs, Neaves said.

The Copperas Cove City Council unanimously approved the final plat on May 21. Despite that, Neaves had concerns over the city’s lack of a signature on the plat.

“Cove says the final signature will be put on the plat after the Bell County commissioners approve it,” the county engineer said.

Bell County Judge David Blackburn questioned whether the county had an agreement with Copperas Cove that outlines each entity’s role in the plat process for properties inside a city’s ETJ. Neaves told Blackburn there is an agreement in place, and Copperas Cove leads the process.

Plats of properties located within a city’s ETJ are reviewed by the municipality and Bell County, according to the county subdivision regulations. The plat must be accepted by both entities moving forward.

“Does it specifically indicate who is primary and who is secondary, and the order of signatures on the plats?” Blackburn asked Neaves.

The interlocal agreements, the county engineer explained, sets who leads the plat process and that concerns from both entities must be addressed by a developer before final approval.

“It never says anything about the county signing the plat, but informally we do,” Neaves said.