The purpose of Lake Geneva’s Comprehensive Plan is to give the city council the authority to plan and to control the future growth and development of the city.
Once every ten years the city, as required by law, has the opportunity to change and update the city’s comprehensive plan’s view for the future. Unlike the yearly or special changes to the comprehensive plan, this update does not require the property owner’s approval or request to make those changes. Changes which could add to or take away millions of dollars to the owner’s property value can be done with or without the property owner’s approval or request. Other than this required 10-year review, only the owner of the property can request a change to the comprehensive plan for the property they own.
The primary changes that are at stake in this review are on the city’s “future map” and in the definitions of zoning categories and what development or use is permitted by each zoning category. In addition, to the millions of dollars at stake in property values, is the city’s future authority to deny or grant a requested zoning change or conditional use permits based on its compatibility with the city’s comprehensive plan. Any request that is not compatible with the current or future zoning maps must be denied. For the city to grant such a request, the owner of the property must request and receive a change to the comprehensive plan which is a process that is a limited to when, how and under what conditions changes may be made.
The single biggest property at stake is the Hillmoor property that is currently zoned, and future zoned, as “public recreation”. Changing this zoning, or what can be done in that zoning, will alter the future of the city. So far, in the history of the comprehensive plan, every change or attempted change has made or would have made the comprehensive plan worse or less effective. In the past, the worst changes to the comprehensive plan are those that have been made to settle a lawsuit, and Hillmoor may well be the next casualty on that list.
Cartoon of the Week