Minutes for the Town of Concord Plan Commission special meeting


Public Hearing for the amended Town of Concord Comprehensive Land Use Plan


The meeting opened at 7:00 p.m. with Lloyd Zastrow, Jim Gilbert, Kim Miller, Sally Williams, and Kim Herro present. Board members Dale Konle and Bill Ingersoll were also present. Steering committee members Larry Oliverson and Tom Williams were present along with MSA planner Jason Valerius. Twenty-six Concord town citizens signed the sign-in sheet.

Sally Williams stated that the meeting was properly posted.

The meeting was turned over to steering committee chair Larry Oliverson to conduct the Public Hearing.

Public Hearing for the Town of Concord Comprehensive Land Use Plan

Introduction (Larry Oliverson)

Larry gave a brief overview of the Town Plan update process. He stated that the Plan is legally required, serves to protect property rights and establish equal treatment of petitioners, simplifies decision making, and prevents legal issues for town.

The town adopted a Public Participation Plan and has held three community input meetings and conducted a mailed survey. Throughout the planning process, the steering committee worked back and forth with MSA to amend and update the plan.

Larry reviewed the survey results. Out of 794 surveys mailed out, 236 were returned for a 30% response rate. 80% of respondents indicated a desire to limit all business development to the hamlet area. The questions gauging citizen concern regarding impact of business development indicated that for all potential impacts listed >75% of citizens were either very or moderately concerned about those impacts.

Review of Plan changes (Jason Valerius)

Jason explained that the Town is under county zoning but that the county asks for town recommendations for land use petitions. He also stated that there is potential for annexation from the neighboring communities of Oconomowoc and Summit as a change in state law now allows annexation across county lines without town approval.

Jason then gave an overview of Plan changes in each element.

Vision Statement – added a definition of rural character

Issues & Opportunities – The town population has dropped in the last 10 years due to a drop in household size. Population is projected to remain steady for next 20 yrs. This is by design and reflects that the current which seeks to limit development is achieving its goal.

Housing – The town will continue to be more restrictive than Jefferson County in regard to lot splits on non-prime land by decreasing allowable lot splits from 3 to 2.

Transportation – The town will post weight limits on certain roads to address an increase in truck traffic. The town may consider improving roads as they are resurfaced by increasing shoulder width.

Utilities & Community Facilities – Jason showed data indicating that from 1999 to 2009 there were  9 new septic systems per year. In the last 10 years, there were2.6 new septic systems per year. This would indicate that development has been slowed and held to a minimum.

Wording has been added to indicate that the town opposes utility scale solar and wind developments.

Agricultural – Jason presented a map showing areas that can’t be developed due to environmental limitations.

Cultural – no new content

Economic Development – The town will not approve commercial development outside of the hamlet and there will be no expansion of hamlet.

Intergovernmental – A concern is the potential for annexation from Oconomowoc and Summit. The plan directs town officials to approach these municipalities to establish a working relationship. There is no directive to pursue border agreements at this time as exploring such agreements may be inviting discussion of something that’s not being asked for right now.

The town also needs to maintain a good relationship with Jefferson County. The town needs to use the Plan as the basis for land use decisions. The plan directs the town to maintain documentation showing how each land use decision of the town is consistent with the Plan.

Land Use – A Section has been added outlining suggested guidelines for business development in the hamlet. Suggested guideline address size, traffic, lighting, noise, viewshed, water quality, odors, and air quality.

Implementation - This element relates to implementing strategies outlined in previous chapters. It addresses the following:

The need for the town to maintain documentation for land use decisions

Town expectation that Jefferson County will to adhere to its own land use plan and to state law

Capital Improvement Plan – directs the town to develop a 3–5-year plan for major expenses such as road repair and building maintenance. This should be established by next year’s budget.

The amendment process has been clarified. It has also been amended to indicate that the process will start with the town board. If a proposal is introduced which is inconsistent with the plan, the Town Board will decide whether or not to pursue a plan amendment. Jason reviewed the remaining process – there must be notice of a public hearing and a mailing sent to all town residents, the Plan Commission will hear the petition and make a decision. If the plan commission does not recommend the amendment to the town board, the petition is dead. If the plan commission recommends the petition to the Town Board, then Board may vote yes or no or send it back to plan commission for changes.

Changes since public hearing draft was published

All amendments will require all residents to be notified by mail.  

A reference to following county policies was clarified to indicate that the town follows county policy in regard to lot splits (with the exception of limiting non-prime splits) and farm consolidations.

Adequate parking was added to the list of guidelines for business development in the hamlet.

Comments/ questions

Q. Why is farmland preservation not mentioned?

A. The whole document is aimed at farmland preservation by limiting development & limiting rezoning out of A-1.

Q. Why comment on solar and wind – does the town have anything to say about approval?

A. Wind and solar installations are approved by the PSC. The plan references its opposition only to make clear the town’s position on the issue



Q. How is the hamlet boundary determined?

A. The boundaries were originally determined by Jefferson County. They were modified slightly for this plan – the wetlands were included and the southern border was adjusted slightly to try and run along property lines as much as possible. It can change but only through a plan amendment.

Q. Who reviews water quality - isn’t that the DNR?

A.  Jefferson County and the DNR work together to ensure water quality

Q. Question about annexation in regard to the village of Sullivan.

A.  There is no indication that their trajectory of limited growth is changing so annexation by them does not seem to be a threat.

Q. Concern about annexation in the next 10 years.

A. Jason had talked to the city of Oconomowoc development director - they have no immediate objective to grow into Concord. The process is driven by property owners - they can talk to the city and request annexation but the city has no design to be proactive in this.

There was extensive discussion about the plan amendment procedure. There was concern that the plan commission seemed to have veto power over the town board in regard to amending the comprehensive plan. The process states that if the plan commission does not pass a resolution moving the amendment to the town board, the amendment does not go forward. Jason explained that the process in the town plan reflects the amendment process required by state statute. In state statutes the roll of elected officials is to adopt what is brought forward by plan commission.

Motion to adjourn by Jim Gilbert/ Kim Miller at 8:45 p.m. Meeting adjourned.

Respectfully submitted, Sally Williams, secretary

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Sunday, November 27, 2022 - 9am