Janesville54.3°

Project rezone application nullifies neighbor petitions

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Kayla Bunge
January 15, 2008
— Neighbor petitions protesting the proposed Mirbeau-Hummel development have been nullified by a change in the rezone application for the development, City Attorney Berwyn Braden said.

David Williams, attorney for the neighbors, gave the city 40 protest petitions signed by residents whose property is within 100 feet or across the street from the Hummel property. The petitions state a rezone of the property must be approved by a three-fourths majority of the city council.


But Braden said in a letter Monday the petitions are not sufficient to require a three-fourths vote because the amended rezone application for the Mirbeau-Hummel development puts a 120-foot-wide buffer between the development and its immediate neighbors. The developers amended their rezone application and general development plan Nov. 15.


The 120-foot buffer would remain zoned rural holding.


Friends of Geneva Lake co-founder Penny Roehrer said Monday night she and a few other voters just learned of the amended rezone request earlier that day.


Alderman Mary Jo Fesenmaier also was unaware of the change.


“It doesn’t stick out in my mind,” she said.


The plan commission may have been informed of the change, but as a council member she can’t remember being told about it, she said.


“I’m going back in my records to see if I can find it,” she said.


The amended application includes two locations without a 120-foot buffer.


Braden said in his letter that the first location is “a short area” on the northern portion of the development with only a 50-foot barrier between it and the land that abuts it, which is owned by the Michael G. Bungert Estate Trust. The other area has no buffer between it and the land that abuts it owned by the Otto Jacobs Company/Thomas Jacobs.


Neither property owner submitted protest petitions.


Other than those two properties, Braden said, “there are no adjoining property owners within 100 feet of the proposed (development),” and as such the submitted protest petitions are insufficient.



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