There are several reasons for the Code to be updated. One reason is to provide a method of numbering sections within the Code that will facilitate the Zoning Code’s incorporation into an ongoing project to codify all of the Town’s ordinances to facilitate access and knowledge of the ordinances affecting the Town. Some sections have been updated to ensure compliance with current Wisconsin statutes and law. Changes to other sections of the Zoning Code are intended to address some specific issues that the Town has experienced in recent years.
The current process to amend the Town’s Zoning Code actually started several years ago. Since the process first started, the Planning & Zoning Commission and Town Board have worked through the entire Zoning Code and considered proposed revisions to effected sections during numerous monthly meetings. Once the initial review process was completed, notice of a public hearing was given and a public hearing was held before the Planning & Zoning Commission and the Town Board to permit public comment on the proposed revisions to the Zoning Code. Following approval by the Town Board, the proposed amendment to the Zoning Code was forwarded to Waukesha County, as approval by the County is required before the amendment to the Zoning Code can take effect.
At the outset, it is important to understand that, although the Zoning Code established regulations for land use within specific zoning “districts” within the Town that are intended to promote the health, safety and general welfare of the Town. The determination of which district is appropriate for a particular parcel within the Town, however, is determined by the Town’s “comprehensive” plan, a separate document. It is equally important to understand that Federal Fair Housing Act prohibits decisions related to the development or use of land based upon the race, sex, religion, national origin, color, disability, or familial statues of residents or potential residents. Similarly, a municipality may not make zoning or land use decisions on neighbors’ fears that a dwelling would be occupied by members of theses protected classes. As a result, zoning ordinances may not contain provisions that treat uses such as affordable housing, supportive housing, or group homes for people with disabilities differently than other similar uses. Establishment of land use policies such as density or design requirements that make residential development prohibitively expensive, prohibitions on multifamily housing, or a ceiling of four (4) or fewer unrelated adults in a household may be considered discriminatory if it can be proven that these policies have a disproportionate impact on minorities, families with children, or people with disabilities. As a result, the Town’s Zoning Code has been developed with the intention of providing regulations that promote the health, safety, and general welfare of the Town in a nondiscriminatory manner.
The speed limits were reduced for a several reasons. The Town has received numerous requests to have them lowered over the past few years. In fact, the Town just received a petition signed by forty-one (41) residents to lower the speed limits on Piper and Ulrickson Roads. The Town is aware that many people use these roads to walk their dogs, ride their horses or for exercise. Lastly, the Town Board discussed on which roads should the speed limit be lowered. The Town Board decided that the roads that should be reduced are the roads in which a subdivision enters/exits out onto. The intent in the reduction is to keep the public safe.