FOLEY – Residents of the Mills community will have a chance this summer to decide if they want to join the city of Foley following the passage of an annexation bill in the Alabama Legislature.

House Bill 488, sponsored by Rep. Frances Holk-Jones, R-Foley, calls for a referendum in the Mills community to allow residents to determine if their community will be annexed into Foley. The bill received a final vote for passage Thursday, June 1 and now goes to Gov. Kay Ivey to be signed into law.

Mayor Ralph Hellmich said part of the Mills community is in the city limits and part is in an unincorporated area of Baldwin County.

“This will allow the city of Foley and the residents of Mills to come into the city of Foley so that the community is united,” Hellmich said. He said most residents in the community support the proposal.

“We had 105 lots down there and only three said they didn’t want to come in. The rest signed it and said they wanted to come in,” Hellmich said. “They very much want to be part of Foley. Half of the Mills Community is already Foley. The other half wants to be as well.”

Once the bill is signed, Baldwin County Probate Judge Harry D’Olive Jr. will have 30 days to schedule a referendum in the community. The vote will be 30 to 50 days after D’Olive issues the order to hold the referendum.

Hellmich said city officials are working with D’Olive and community members to set up the vote. He said state law requires that a referendum take place in the area where annexation is proposed. 

“We’re working with Probate Court and the community action group down there to establish a place and a time for the referendum vote,” Hellmich said.