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Comprehensive Planning Committee
Monday, June 20 2011
TIME: 6:30 p.m.
LOCATION: at the Taycheedah Town Hall
Business Meeting


1. Call to order.
2. Approval of the minutes of the 5/19/11 meeting.
3. Review and discuss revisions to the Code of Ordinances and the Comprehensive Plan.
4. Schedule the next meeting.
5. Public Comment.
6. Adjournment.

Brenda A. Schneider


The Town of Taycheedah Comprehensive Planning Committee met on Monday, June 20th, 2011, at 6:30 p.m., at the Taycheedah Town Hall. Members present were: Ed Braun, Tim Krawczyk, Neal Nett, Rebecca Ries, Brenda Schneider, Joanne Thome, Joe Thome and Mike Wirtz. Absent was Jerry Guelig. Also present were Jeff Sanders, Community Planning & Consulting, and two interested person.

1. Call to Order. Chairman Ed Braun called the meeting to order at 6:30 pm.

2. Approval of the minutes of the 5/19/11 meeting. Neal Nett motioned to approve the minutes of the 5/19/11 meeting, seconded by Mike Wirtz. Motion carried (8-0-1 absent).

3. Review and discuss revisions to the Code of Ordinances and the Comprehensive Plan.

Mr. Sanders reported that quoted doing the Town's mapping for the project through OMNNI at a cost of $400-500.

During the May 19th meeting, the Committee compiled several questions; which Mr. Sanders provided the following responses:

1 Why do we need to worry about doing this now? Maybe we should wait until after things settle down in Madison. Participation in the Program is not mandatory. Qualifying landowners will benefit by getting it done now rather than later. There is currently no discussion in the legislature of eliminating the Program. State discussion has concentrated on eliminating the conversion fee and the PACE easement program.
2 When does Fond du Lac County need to re-certify their Farmland Preservation Plan? Fond du Lac County's deadline is 12/31/12. It is unlikely that DATCP would extend the deadline without legitimate cause. The Town's Plan does not need to be completed by the County's deadline.
3 What are the consequences if we don't participate in WLI? Qualifying landowners would not be eligible for the $7.50 per acre credit. Once current Farmland Preservation Agreements expire, there would be no credits until the Town amends their Plan and ordinances and DATCP certifies the WLI Plan.
4 What are the benefits? Landowners would be eligible for WLI tax credits.
5 When will tax credits end if we don't do this? The tax credits will end when each of the landowners current Farmland Preservation Agreements expire.
6 Will the Town's Farmland Preservation Map pass DATCP certification if there are "other ag" districts in the primarily ag area of the Town? DATCP is not concerned about specific classifications as long as the total acreage of eligible land does not change significantly. Significantly interpreted as +/- 80%.
7 What would be the purpose of having more than one WLI compliant district? The number of WLI complaint districts varies depending upon the needs of each municipality. Examples:
Comprehensive Planning Committee
June 20th, 2011

A-1-A Exclusive Ag 500+ animal units
A-1-B Exclusive Ag up to 499 animal units
A-2 35-40 acre farms
A-3 hobby farms 5-10 acres
All of these districts are different in scope and can be WLI compliant. The ordinance needs to be amended to reflect the Committee's decision regarding the number of ag districts. It was noted that the Comprehensive Plan Future Land Use Map does not differentiate between different agricultural districts.
8 Any non-farm residential lots created can be sold publicly. Is the exception of creating a farm residential lot for self, parent, child, or farmhand still in the law? The family/employee exception has been removed from WLI. The non-farm residence is meant to replace the Farmland Preservation exception.
9 If an active farmer buys a retiring farmer's property (crop land, house, barn, etc.) for the sole purpose of increasing his total cropable acreage, will the active farmer be able to split off the house and buildings? Would this split be considered a non-farm residence? If yes, what if the retiring farmer has used/sold his ONE non-farm residence applicable to his base farm tract? A base farm tract is defined as all contiguous land owned by one owner. Each area of contiguous land owned by one owner is a base farm tract. Some landowners will own multiple base farm tracts. Each base farm tract consisting of at least 63 acres will be entitled to one non-farm residence, based upon the Committee's decision of 1=3 acres in the 1:20 ratio and the decision to allow one non-farm residence per base farm tract. That being the case, the house, barn, etc. can be split off of the cropable land if the base farm tract is at least 63 acres and the landowner has not utilized his one non-farm residence. If the one non-farm residence has been exhausted, the only option would be rezone.
If a base farm tract is split amongst multiple owners, the land loses eligibility for tax credits. However, if the base farm tract remains whole; it continues to qualify for the tax credit.
The Town must identify all base farm tracts. Local administrative policy would need to be determined.
10 Will the WLI rules/ordinance requirements/conversion fee, etc. apply to all owners of A-1 zoned land even if the owners choose to not collect the tax credit? Yes, however, the conversion fee has been recently been eliminated from the law.
11 What we have now is working (ordinances and Comp Plan). Why do we need to change it? The process is necessary in order for landowners to continue to receive tax credits. If the Town wants to retain what they have now; then they don't need to pursue participation in the WLI Program. The consequence is no tax credits.

Comprehensive Planning Committee
June 20th, 2011

12 Would we keep the 5-acre minimum lot size for WLI non-compliant lands? This is possible by ordinance language if that is what the Town wants.
13 Would allowing one 3-acre non-farm residence eliminate hobby farms? Yes and no, depending upon the individual circumstances. Typically, a hobby farm is created when a farmer retires. The house, barn, etc., and a few acres of land are split from the cropable land. Under WLI, this may or may not be possible depending upon the details outlined in #9 above. Hobby farms can also be created in non-compliant WLI lands without the application of #9 above.
14 Can we prohibit non-farm residences? Establish ZERO as the number of allowable non-farm residences. Mr. Sanders has not heard of any communities taking such an approach. He has heard some communities have establish huge lot size as their 1 in the 1:20 ratio and others have increased the ratio from 1:20 (the minimum).

The Committee's goal for the next meeting is to review the draft ordinance amendments incorporating the overlay districts and WLI compliant amendments to the ag district.

4. Schedule the next meeting. The next Committee meeting will be held on Thursday, July 21st (without Mr. Sanders) and Monday, August 15th (with Mr. Sanders), at 6:30.

5. Public Comment. Mr. Sanders addressed a question regarding a base farm tract covering two towns.

6. Adjournment. Joe Thome moved to adjourn at 10:16 p.m., seconded by Mike Wirtz. Motion carried (8-0-1 absent).

Respectfully Submitted,
Brenda A. Schneider
Committee Secretary

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Fond du Lac County, Wisconsin

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