Zoning Code | Procedures - Code Amendment

Description: From time to time, it may be necessary or desirable to amend the text of the zoning code and the zoning map.

Application fee: $440, plus any professional charge-backs fees related to the review of the application

Application deadline: The zoning administrator must determine the application is complete and ready for review at least 4 weeks before the Plan Commission meeting, which is typically held the first Monday of the month.

Decision maker(s): Plan Commission makes a recommendation and the Town Board makes the final decision; the Waukesha County Board of Supervisors must also approve the change for it to become effective

Decision criteria: See s. 500.165 of the zoning code

Review process:
  1. Submittal of application materials. The applicant shall submit a complete application to the zoning administrator along with the application fee as may be established by the Town Board.
  2. Staff review. Within 10 days of receiving the application and other required materials, the zoning administrator shall either schedule a date for the public hearing with the plan commission if the application is deemed complete or make a determination that the application is incomplete and notify the applicant in writing of the deficiencies and that the applicant has 3 months from the date of such determination to resubmit the application or forfeit the application fee, if any. The zoning administrator shall take no further steps to process the application until the deficiencies are remedied. The incomplete application shall be retained as a public record.
  3. Special notice to airport. If the application is for any change in an airport affected area, as defined in s. 62.23(6)(am)1.b., Wis. Stats., the zoning administrator shall mail a copy of the notice by regular mail to the owner or operator of the airport bordered by the airport affected area.
  4. Special notice to county supervisor. If the application would revise the town’s zoning map, the zoning administrator shall send one copy of the application to each county supervisor whose district would be affected by a revision to the zoning map.
  5. General notice by type of application. If a proposed amendment would revise the text of this chapter, the zoning administrator shall provide for class 2 public notice, distribution list notice, and meeting agenda notice consistent with division 2 of article 5. If a proposed amendment would revise the zoning map and is initiated by a property owner, the zoning administrator shall provide for class 2 public notice, property owner notice, distribution list notice, and meeting agenda notice consistent with division 2 of article 5. If a proposed amendment would revise the zoning map and is initiated by the town, the zoning administrator shall provide for class 2 public notice, distribution list notice, and meeting agenda notice consistent with division 2 of article 5.
  6. Staff report preparation and distribution. The zoning administrator shall prepare a written staff report as described in this division and provide a copy of it to each member of the Plan Commission and Town Board, the applicant, and any other interested person upon request.
  7. Public hearing. Allowing for proper notice, the plan commission and the Town Board shall conduct a joint public hearing to review the application consistent with division 3 of article 5. Prior to the close of the public hearing, the applicant, the plan commission, or the town board may request a continuance consistent with division 3 of article 5. The plan commission shall not render its recommendation at this meeting, unless the Plan Commission, by majority vote, determines that preparation of an updated staff report is not needed.
  8. Recommendation. At a subsequent meeting of the plan commission, but no more than 60 days after the public hearing, the plan commission after considering the comments and the staff report shall make a recommendation to the town board based on the decision criteria contained in this division to (i) approve the amendment, (ii) approve the amendment with conditions, or (iii) deny the amendment.
  9. Transmittal of recommendation. If the Plan Commission action is favorable, the zoning administrator shall draft an ordinance effectuating its determination. If the Plan Commission action is not favorable, the Plan Commission shall report its determination to the Town Board including its reasons for denial.
  10. Decision. The Town Board after considering the Plan Commission’s recommendation shall make a decision based on the decision criteria contained in this division to (i) approve the amendment, (ii) approve the amendment with conditions, or (iii) deny the amendment.
  11. Required vote with downzoning. An amendment must be approved by at least two−thirds of the  members−elect if the amendment would decrease the development density of the land to be less dense than was allowed under its previous usage or that would reduce the number of permitted uses of the land to fewer uses than were allowed under its previous usage. If the person who owns the land affected by the amendment or agrees to the amendment, the ordinance may be enacted by a simple majority of the members−elect.
  12. Required vote with a protest by qualified property owners. An amendment to the zoning map may not become effective except upon a favorable vote of 3/4 of the Town Board members voting on the proposed change when (i) those owning 20 percent or more of the land area within the proposed map amendment file a written protest, (ii) those owning 20 percent or more of the land area within 100 feet of the proposed map amendment file a written protest, or (iii) those owning 20 percent or more of the land directly opposite of the proposed map amendment but within 100 feet of the street frontage file a written protest.
  13. Required vote with protest of airport. If a proposed amendment would make any change in an airport affected area, as defined under s. 62.23(6)(am)1.b., Wis. Stats., and the owner or operator of the airport bordered by the airport affected area files a protest against the proposed amendment, no ordinance which makes such change may be approved except by the affirmative vote of two-thirds of the members of the Town Board present and voting.
  14. Preparation of decision notice. Based on the action of the Town Board, the zoning administrator shall prepare a decision notice consistent with this division.
  15. Applicant notification. Within a reasonable time following the Town Board’s decision, the zoning administrator shall mail the decision notice to the applicant by regular mail.
  16. County notification. If the Town Board approves the amendment, the town clerk shall, within a reasonable time following the Town Board’s decision, send 3 copies of the decision notice to the county clerk for approval of the county board.
  17. Preparation of new zoning map. The zoning administrator shall cause a new zoning map to be prepared consistent with division 3 of article 7, if the amendment involves a change to the zoning map and the County Board approves the amendment.