Lake Geneva’s pier wars go from quiet guerilla insurrection to open warfare as the spring of 2016 digs in.
What is the cause for the months of delays on the approval of the Milliette Family LLC request to remove and reconstruct their lake pier? Even though the Milliette Family has DNR approval for the new pier, and the staff has no objections to their request, the approval is being held up by the Lake Geneva City Council over the lakefront of the city held property called Baker Park. The size of Baker Park is shown as about 30 ft. by 40 ft. (less than 1/32 of an acre) on the map on the Walworth County viewer with the comment “Gap listed in legal descriptions”, but the same Baker Park is listed as 1-acre in the city’s Park and Open Space Plan. So what is the true legal size and location of Baker Park? There is an old agreement on Baker Park that is buried in the archives that may settle the size and location of Baker Park and settle the issue between the Milliette Family and their neighbor to the south, Mr. Andy “Santa Claus who acts like anything but” Loughlin. That document’s agreement apparently permitted the placing of buoys and piers while modifying the city’s riparian lake rights in front of whatever has become of Baker Park.
Until the “little mouse that roars” of the archives, Lake Geneva City Attorney Dan Draper can find it, the Milliette Family will have to wait. It is interesting to note that included with the application there are the justifications for both approving and denying the Milliette Family’s request. To make a valid decision, though, a member of the Planning Commission would be required to know what the Baker Park agreement reads. Although the city’s mousey attorney knew that it might be needed, the agreement was not provided to the members of the Planning Commission for the meeting. “Santa Claus,” the gift giver who gifts to so many employees in China, has allegedly sought out and received help in delaying the permit for at least another two months. Incidentally, that same “gift giving sleigh rider” has apparently long hoped to build a second huge pier for his own property next door. His pier is currently down, like most all of Lake Geneva’s piers. Its pieces lie all over the remains of Baker Park with city permission. Why? Go figure. Lake Geneva is still a small town that functions the way it always has.