Comprehensive Planning Update; Town-County Zoning Relations by bsw17644


									Comprehensive Planning Update;
 Town-County Zoning Relations

       Town Officials Workshops
             Spring 2005

               presented by
         James H. Schneider, J. D.
   UW-Extension Local Government Center
Part I—Comprehensive Planning
    Major 2003-04 Comprehensive
        Planning Legislation

• AB 435 to repeal the comp planning
  law died in committee.

• AB 551 to allow town board approval
  of county plan was vetoed by the

• AB 750 to exempt from consistency
  requirement town board exercise of
  disapproval authority over county
  general zoning not taken up in floor
  session and died.

• Act 233 (AB 608) narrowed
  consistency requirement.
   Comprehensive Planning Law--
• Created in 1999 budget act
• Applies to ―local governmental units‖
  – Counties
  – Cities, villages, towns
  – Regional planning commissions
• ―Comprehensive plan‖ is the
  – county ―development plan‖
  – city, village, town ―master plan‖
  – RPC regional ―master plan‖
• The cross-reference to existing terms
  means comprehensive plan is developed by
  planning body that develops & adopts the
  above plans.
     Comprehensive Planning
• County ―planning and zoning agency‖
  ―direct(s) the preparation‖ of the
  development plan/ comprehensive plan
  under the law.

• County board may
  – create a planning & zoning committee or
    commission; or
  – designate an existing committee or commission
    as the county planning & zoning agency.
         Planning Body cont.
• City, village or town (with village powers)
  plan commission is the comprehensive
  planning body.

• A city, village or town, unlike a county, has
  no statutory authority to develop this plan
  by a committee.

• An advisory committee may also be
          Key Aspects of Law

• Public participation guidelines required

• 9 integrated elements required; must be updated at
  least every 10 years

• Intergovernmental aspects (element and sharing of

• Grants provided
How Comprehensive Planning Law
     Relates to Prior Law

• Until the consistency requirement applies
  – county may develop and operate under a
    development plan (or other planning authority).

  – city, village, town may develop and operate
    under master plan (or other planning authority).
• Consistency requirement is in effect a

  – Starting in 2010

  – a local unit must have a comprehensive plan in
    place for its covered actions to be consistent
    with, or else it is at risk of having those actions
    challenged in court.
      Consistency Requirement
• Applies as of Jan. 1, 2010

• Former requirement:
   – General language: ―any program or action of a local
     governmental unit that affects land use‖ must be
     consistent with that unit’s comprehensive plan.
   – Nonexclusive listing of actions subject to consistency
     includes zoning, subdivision regulation, official
     mapping, incorporation, annexation, boundary
     agreements, etc.
   New Consistency Requirement
         (2003 Act 233)
• 2010 consistency requirement applies only
  to the following …
      --zoning ordinances
      --local subdivision regulation under a
        local ordinance
      --official mapping under local
• Effect of Act 233 on local units
  – Narrows actions that must be consistent with
    plan and therefore reduces chances of lawsuits
    after 2010 challenging actions.
  – 9 elements still must be covered in
    comprehensive plan.
  – Narrows the implied mandate to only those
    units engaging in 1 or more of the 3 types of
    covered activities (more below).
               In other words…
• Towns are not required to have comprehensive
  plans by 2010, if they don’t engage in any of the
  actions covered by the consistency requirement:
   – zoning ordinances,
   – subdivision ordinances,
   – official mapping under local ordinance/resolution.
• This likely means, though, that a town board in a
  town without a comp plan would lose the authority
  to disapprove a county general zoning ordinance
  amendment (unless the law is changed).
            Planning Grants

• Available for county, city, village, town &
  RPC comprehensive planning

• Competitive scoring of applications
• Funding incentives (points & $)
  – for ―multi-jurisdictional plans‖
     • a county and 2 local units
     • an RPC and 2 local units
     • 2 local units (city, village, town)
  – 10% of base added for each city, village, town;
    plus, for a county, 10% of county base if all
    towns in county participate.
   Comp Planning Grant Awards
• 2005--$2.0
• 2004--$1.8
• 2003--$2.7
• 2002--$2.8
• 2001--$2.5
• 2000--$1.0 (transportation planning grant)
           $12.8 (total)
  Units Receiving Grants/# of Units
• Towns--466 (8)/1266
• Villages--151 (1)/401
• Cities--93 (6)/190
• Counties--28 (3)/72
• RPC’s--3 (1)/9
• Tribes—2/11 (reservations)
( ) Refers to units that received a 2000 transportation
   planning grant and later received a comprehensive
   planning grant.
    Multi-jurisdictional Grants
• 64 awards

• 643 communities covered
              Some FAQs
• Is a comprehensive plan required?
• Is it necessary to have a plan commission to
  engage in comprehensive planning?
• May an advisory committee be involved?
• May a town base its actions on the county
• Whose plan controls, if plans are in
• See ―Comprehensive Planning and Smart
  Growth FAQs‖

• On Local Government Center website:
(scroll down to FAQs )
• Legislation has stimulated planning.
• Grant funding, the consistency requirement
  and extraterritorial authority will be
  continuing issues.
• Counties & RPCs play an important role in
  providing data & maps as a basis for plans.
• Counties working with local units,
  especially towns, may provide planning
  resources & help achieve consistent, cost-
  effective outcomes.
   Part II—Town-County Zoning

A. Background—Local Planning authority

B. Zoning
A. Background--Local Planning Authority
  • County…
    – may prepare a development plan
      (comprehensive plan) for town territory.
    – may plan with towns and other local units.
    – must incorporate city & village master
      (comprehensive) plans into county plan.
    – may prepare city & village plans if requested.
• Town planning authority…
  – is under city/village authority for
    master/comprehensive planning
  – Which requires that the town have
    village powers.
• Town may plan with county or
  neighboring units under
  – the comprehensive planning law.
  – general intergovernmental cooperation
  – cooperative boundary agreement law
    (with ―municipal‖ neighbors).
  – extraterritorial zoning law (with city or
    village neighbor).
• Cities & villages may…
  – develop a master plan (comprehensive plan)
     • for their own territory
     • for adjacent town territory
  – plan cooperatively with towns and other units
    under various statutes (see previous slide)
• Providers of planning services for town
  territory may include
  –   town and county staff
  –   regional plan commission
  –   neighboring communities
  –   consultants
 Planning in Extraterritorial Area
• Under county law, the city and village
  master/comprehensive plan ―controls‖ in
  the ET area.

• When the consistency requirement takes
  effect in 2010, this means that county
  actions in the ET area must be consistent
  with the city or village plan (if any) for that
  area (unless the law is changed).
• In addition, the city or village may exercise
  ET subdivision review and (less commonly)
  ET zoning.

• This arrangement especially points out the
  importance of affected units working
  together to reach agreement for planning for
  the ET area.
B. Zoning
            County-Town Zoning
• In general
   – County authority is to zone towns, not cities &
     villages, but
   – Certain minimum special zoning provisions (e.g.,
     shoreland & floodplain zoning) survive annexation or
• If no county general zoning is in effect
   – town may zone unilaterally under village powers; or
   – town may petition county to adopt general zoning,
     and then zone on own if county does not act within
     one year (rare).
• If county general zoning is in effect…

   – town board may by resolution accept county zoning
     (sec. 59.69(5)(c); or
   – town can zone under village powers under sec. 60.62
      • town meeting (or referendum) must authorize town board to
        exercise zoning under village powers,
      • county must approve ordinance &
      • county must approve amendments
      • before they can take effect.
    Evidence of Town Going under
       County General Zoning

• See the town board minutes for the meeting at
  which the resolution was adopted.

• The town clerk is required to send a certified copy
  of the resolution to the county clerk, who must
  record the filing and print it in the county board’s
  proceedings. Sec. 59.69(5)(c).
       County Zoning Amendments
              (Town Role)
• Town may petition for amendment and be
  involved in reviewing proposed amendments
• Petition for amendment to county zoning may be
  made by
   –   town board
   –   affected property owners
   –   county zoning agency
   –   county board members
        Town Role in County
       Comprehensive Revision
• If county general zoning is in effect in a
  – town board has to approve county
    comprehensive revision within a year to be in
    effect in town - or else town becomes unzoned.
  – ―Comprehensive revision‖ is a complete
    rewriting which changes numerous zoning
    provisions and alters or adds zoning districts.
• The ability of a town to ―bail out‖ of a
  comprehensive zoning revision has contributed to
  outdated county zoning.
• However, due to the comprehensive planning law,
  it is expected that county zoning will be updated.
• Towns that have been involved in county planning
  and zoning revisions will more likely have a new
  county zoning ordinance that they like.
        Town Role in County Zoning
           Amendment Process
• A proposed amendment must have a public hearing held by the
  county zoning agency. (Class 2 notice required.)

• Notice of the hearing must be mailed to the town clerk of
  each affected town 10 days prior to the hearing.

• The town board may file a certified copy of the resolution
  disapproving the proposed amendment with the county
   – before the public hearing
   – at the public hearing
   – or within 10 days (*30 days) after the public hearing.
 Extending Town Review Period
• *The town board may extend the review
  period by 20 days so it has 30 days after the
  hearing to disapprove by adopting a
  resolution and filing a certified copy with
  the county clerk. The extended review
  period remains in effect until rescinded by
  resolution and filed with the county clerk.
      Town Board Disapproval
• A district boundary change may be disapproved
  by the affected town.

• A text change may be disapproved by the majority
  of affected towns.

• It is important for towns to review proposed
  amendments and timely disapprove those they
  object to (see next slide).
   Three Disapproval Scenarios
• First, if the proposed amendment makes
  only the change in the petition and it was
  not disapproved by the affected town(s)
  (i.e., the affected town for a district change,
  a majority of affected towns for text
• The amendment takes effect upon passage
  by the county board.
• Second, if the proposed amendment is changed
  after referral to the towns and passed by the
  county board, the effective date is delayed and
  town boards may exercise disapproval authority as
   – The ordinance must be submitted to affected town(s)
     within 7 days of passage by county board.
   – The town board has 40 days after enactment to approve
     or disapprove. Disapproval, as above, is effective if a
     majority disapproves a text amendment, or if the
     affected town disapproves a district boundary change.
• Third, if (for some reason) the county board
  passes an amendment that was disapproved
  by a town (district boundary change) or a
  majority of affected towns (text change), the
  town board(s) may exercise disapproval
  within the 40 day period as in the previous
            Special Zoning
      Approval/Disapproval Limited
• Town authority is limited under certain special
  zoning statutes.
• County must enact shoreland & floodplain
  zoning, even if it does not have general zoning.
• Shoreland & floodplain zoning ordinance
  – effective in town without need of town approval,
  – and town disapproval does not apply to amendments
    to these ordinances.
• County exclusive agricultural zoning has certain
  special provisions...
   – Town board may reject coverage, but in counties with
     density of at least 100 persons per square mile, it takes
     a majority of towns to reject coverage.
   – Town board may disapprove a text amendment, in
     which case the previous language remains in effect.
   – Town board, as under general county zoning, may veto
     a map amendment.
• Recent act on livestock siting and expansion
  limits local regulatory authority but does
  not change underlying structural zoning
  relationship between the county and town.

• E.g., the town still has the same disapproval
  rights as before.
• Town with zoning under village powers
  may regulate:
  – shorelands & floodplains if ordinance is at least
    as restrictive as county ordinance, resulting in
    concurrent jurisdiction.
  – exclusive agricultural zoning.
Towns may resent lack of greater zoning
– As stated above, towns in general may plan with the
  county and their neighbors to try to achieve mutually
  beneficial results.
– Under cooperative boundary law, city/village &
  neighboring town may reach agreement on general
  zoning, but town remains under county shoreland,
  floodplain & exclusive agricultural zoning.
– Under extraterritorial zoning, city/village & town
  may displace general county general zoning.
 Some Final Observations on Town-
   County Zoning Relationships
• Towns can play an important part in county
• Get to know county officials, staff & processes.
• Develop a town comprehensive plan to serve as a
  basis for your involvement in county decisions.
• Be involved in county planning and policy-
• Take part in county administrative decisions, such
  as variances and conditional use permits (e.g.,
  testify at a hearing; submit a letter, resolution or
  motion), but …
   – be clear on who’s being represented (e.g., yourself, the
     town), and
   – tailor your involvement to the forum (i.e., in quasi-
     judicial matters, such as CUPs and variances, address
     the legal standards and avoid outside contacts with
     members of the decision-making body).

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