Jul 28, 2014

Public Hearing for Town's Incorporation Bid Set

The public is invited to provide input Oct. 23 at Brookfield Town Hall on the town's request to become a village.

Public Hearing for Town's Incorporation Bid Set

Should the Town of Brookfield be allowed to incorporate as a village? Can it incorporate using lands from the Town of Waukesha over that town's objection?

A state agency will take public input on the Town of Brookfield's incorporation request at a hearing from 1 to 7 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 23 at Brookfield Town Hall, 645 Janacek Rd.

The state's Incorporation Review Board and Department of Administration will not issue a decision Oct. 23. The state has up to six months to rule on whether the town has met standards to seek voter approval to incorporate.

Written comments may be submitted before and after the public hearing by mailing them to Erich Schmidtke, Division of Intergovernmental Relations, Wisconsin Department of Administration, P.O. Box 1645, Madison, WI  53701. Any such communication must be postmarked no later than Friday, Nov. 2.

Town wants tax base, boundary protection

The town paid $25,000 when it submitted a 62-page petition last winter that outlines the rationale for incorporating. The request was put on hold for months while the Town of Brookfield met with adjacent municipalities and a reserve judge in an attempt to mediate the issues short of incorporation. That mediation effort failed and the state is once again poised to hear and rule on the case.

It's the town's third such attempt; the state ruled against the town in 1999 and 2001.

The Town of Brookfield wants to incorporate primarily to protect the town from further annexation by neighboring cities, and preserve its future autonomous government and tax base. The Corners redevelopment proposal, to be anchored by a Von Maur department store, is another example of why the town wants to future tax base protection to finance public improvements.

In order to incorporate, the town needs additional land because it no longer has the minimum required 4 square miles of territory to become a village or city.

The petition proposes including about 288 acres of continguous land in the Town of Waukesha, south of Greenfield Avenue, west of Springdale Road and east of Highway 164. 

The Town of Waukesha is challenging whether the Town of Brookfield can involuntarily include Town of Waukesha lands in its bid. The Town of Waukesha also is seeking to overturn a circuit judge's ruling excluding the Town of Waukesha from intervening in the case.

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