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Municipal Technical Advisory Service (MTAS)

Original Author: Hardy, Pat
Date of Material: 02/23/2005

Contraction of city limits
Annexation--Laws and regulations
Annexation--Laws and regulations--Tennessee
Taxes--Real property
Taxes--Real property--Tennessee

Deannexation and the Payment of Property Taxes

Reviewed Date: 06/09/2021
MTAS was asked about the process of deannexation (also known as 'contraction') and about the payment of property taxes for those who reside in the area to be deannexed.

February 23, 2005 (updated October 2017)

Dear Mayor,

You have asked about the process of de-annexation (also known as “contraction”). The process for de-annexation can be found in T.C.A. § 6-51-201 et seq.

There you will find in T.C.A. §6-51-201(b)1 that any city may contract its boundaries “...upon its own initiative by ordinance when it appears in the best interest of the territory.” This can only occur after proper notice and the holding of a public hearing.

Also, when you finish contraction you will need to notify the county tax assessor (see T.C.A. §6-51-204(b)) and according to T.C.A. §6-51-203 a copy of the ordinance, map and detailed description must also be sent to the comptroller of the treasury and the assessor of property for each county affected by the deannexation.

You have also asked about the payment of property taxes for those who reside in the area to be de-annexed. As I understand it the proper tax notices were not sent to these residents, and because they are about to be de-annexed you want to know if they are required to pay taxes for the past year. The answer is yes, they are required to pay these taxes. I checked with Sid Hemsley, our attorney in Knoxville and he informed me that residents must pay taxes (because they have received services) even though there may have been some mix up with the paperwork related to these taxes.

Please let me know if you need any more information on these issues.


Patrick Hardy
Municipal Management Consultant