At least thirty days before instituting any annexation proceeding under this chapter, a city or town shall serve notice and a certified copy of the ordinance on the attorney for the Commonwealth, or on the county attorney, if there is one, and on the chairman of the governing body of the county wherein such territory lies that it will, on a given day, petition the circuit court to grant the annexation requested in the ordinance. A copy of the notice and ordinance, or a descriptive summary of the notice and ordinance and a reference to the place within the city or town where copies of the notice and ordinance may be examined, shall be published at least once a week for four successive weeks in some newspaper published in such city or town, and when there is no newspaper published therein, then in a newspaper having general circulation in the county whose territory is affected. The proof of service or certificate of service of the notice and ordinance shall be returned after service to the clerk of the circuit court. Certification from the owner, editor or manager of the newspaper publishing the notice and ordinance or descriptive summary shall be proof of publication.
Code 1950, § 15-152.5; 1952, c. 328; 1962, c. 623, § 15.1-1035; 1979, c. 85; 1997, c. 587.