Planning Commission work Session March 23, 2023

Thursday, March 23, 2023

Call to Order:  6:00 p.m.

Roll Call:  Nancy Strohschein, Chairperson; Linnea Barron, Secretary; Joe Bollech, Board ofReview; Robert Lindert, Vice Chairperson; Jay Loman, Board of Review Chair.  Absent:  Bob Janda, Board Representative; and Donna Preston, Trustee; both absent with notice.

Pledge of Allegiance:  Recited

Guests:  Jason McCarthy

Approval of Agenda:  Joe made a motion to approve the agenda, seconded by Robert.  Motion carried.

Approval of minutes of March 16, 2023 work session:  Robert made a motion to approve the minutes, seconded by Joe.  Motion carried.


1.  Recreation Plan Survey update:

Joe made a collection box for surveys to be dropped off and is located at the town hall.  We sent a total of 500 surveys.  The Survey Monkey is on Facebook and township’s website.  There is a problem with the website and Nancy will work on that.  Nancy reported she has already received some surveys back. 

2.  Recreation Plan update from Jason:

We reviewed the updated sections of our recreation plan.  We like the new map and suggest using a map legend that is color coded to show what we own and what we don’t own, plus identify our main attractions. 

Tonight, we concentrated on the goals & objectives and 5-year work plan. 

Goal #6:  We eliminated goal #6 but kept the objectives and transferred them to goal #4.  The goals were similar, and we felt the objectives fit better under goal #4. 

Goal #7 will now become goal #6.

Under Goal #2 we will add the possibility to mitigate dust control for certain trails.

5-Year Work Plan:  Jason discussed the action plan for projects.  Our goals/objectives will guide us on these.  We could choose a project for every year.  Examples:  2024 – redo the baseball field and get cost estimate.  2025 – kayak launch by Witz Marina on property we own.  The information we obtain from the survey and public hearing will assist us in this.  The deadline to apply for grants is April 1 of every year.  This plan can be amended but must repeat the whole process again, i.e., 30-day review, public hearing.

Timeline for Recreation Plan:  The in-person input session is set for Thursday, May 4, 2023.  If conflict with date, will change it.  We are trying for completion of the rec plan draft by June 1, 2023 and 30-day review begins.  We are trying for a public hearing in July with board approval in August.

3.  Zoning Ordinance

The Zoning Administrator (ZA) and building inspector positions need to be filled.  Chris Wahmhoff, a trustee with the Township Board, stated he would be interested becoming the ZA.  There may be a conflict with his position on the board, but in rural areas that may be overlooked when it is hard to find someone to fill certain positions.  Jay expressed interest in the building inspector position and even considers the ZA.  Both positions require certification via training.

We discussed the article from the MTA on using a municipal civil infraction to enforce nuisance, zoning and building code violations.  Jason explained this very well and we need to implement this in our ordinance.

Before adjourning, Nancy polled each of us as to how many surveys (paper and on-line) we think will be returned by April 30th.   We had some optimistic numbers!!

Next meeting:  Thursday, April 13, 2023 at 6 p.m. at the firehall.

Adjourn:  Robert made a motion to adjourn, seconded by Jay.  Motion carried.  Adjournment was at 7:30 p.m.

Submitted by Linnea Barron, Secretary