Just before the Fourth of July holiday, the Supreme Court of Wisconsin made a dramatic and unanimous decision on behalf of property owners.
In 2019, the Town of Buchanan in Oneida County chose to adopt a Transportation Utility Fee (TUF) to generate revenue to pay for its roads. Buchanan argued that a TUF should be charged to all developed properties and is used to fund the cost of highways, stormwater management, sidewalks, street lighting, traffic control, and any other convenience or public improvement.
While this all sounds well and good, it is essentially an attempted runaround of the state’s strict tax levy limits. The Supreme Court ruled that this is not a fee, but a tax on property owners. The state’s highest court agreed with lower courts and struck down the Town of Buchanan’s unlawful tax.
A unanimous ruling from the Wisconsin Supreme Court is rare, and this decision lets other municipalities across the Badger State know that attempts to circumvent the law will not be tolerated. To learn more about the case, click HERE.
This decision is a huge win for those in Buchanan, but it is a bigger win for all property owners statewide.
*This note was sent to all WRA members on July 12, 2023.