CARW has been working closely with the WRA on a number of bills and issues over the past six months that concern you and your business. While many of these bills have been approved by the governor already, they had yet to be signed into law.
This week Governor Walker signed two more of the WRA’s legislative priorities into law. Both bills have been characterized as “property rights” bills and are intended to make regulations affecting the use and development of property more equitable. The first bill, SB 459 was signed into law as Act 387, providing flexibility and clarity to a number of commercial development issues such as f wetland rules and stormwater compliance efforts. This is very important to commercial real estate because it modifies a number of water and wetlands laws, including that it:
- Provides that DNR may not prohibit the construction of storm water management ponds in navigable or non-navigable artificial waterways as a method for achieving compliance with DNR’s prescribed performance standards for sources of nonpoint water pollution.
- Provides that DNR must give credit for any pollutant reduction achieved by ponds in artificial waterways in determining compliance with performance standards specified in a storm water discharge permits.
- Exempts from wetland permitting requirements any discharge that is the result of maintaining a sedimentation or stormwater detention basin and associated conveyance features.
Also this week the Governor signed AB 582, Property Rights Bill into law as Act 391. It makes a number of changes to land use law, including the following that apply to commercial real estate:
- Requires a court to resolve any ambiguity in the meaning of a word or phrase in a zoning ordinance or shoreland zoning ordinance in favor of the free use of private property.
- Specifically prohibits a county from enacting a development moratorium.
- Prohibits a city, village, town, or county (political subdivision) from prohibiting or unreasonably restricting a real property owner from selling or transferring title to any interest in the real property.
Great Lakes Water: CARW along with many other organizations have stated support for the Great Lakes Water Diversion application. Last week, representatives from the Regional Great Lakes council met to examine the application prior to sending to the Board of Governors. During this review, they reduced the service area of the request. As a result, Waukesha will recalculate the amount of water that will be needed, presumably a decrease from 10 million gallons per day. They will then submit a revised application for review by the group on May 2nd, then gather once again in Chicago on May 10 and 11 to reach consensus on Waukesha’s request.
If the request is approved, it will move to a vote of the eight Great Lake’s governors or their designated representatives on June 13 in Chicago. The final decision must be unanimous. Under the 2008 Great Lakes Compact, a city can’t divert Great Lakes water without the permission of all eight of the region’s governors.
Read more about this issue here: http://www.waukeshadiversion.org/
Please let us know if you have questions! Tracy Johnson at [email protected] or Tom Larson at [email protected]
More information on supporting CARW legislative initiatives through conduit or LDC: https://carw.com/public-policy/direct-givers-conduitrpac/