Mayor planning Madison stadium visit
At last night’s City Plan Commission meeting, Mayor Keith Bosman announced that he and an entourage of members from the community will travel to Madison on Saturday, June 30, to visit and tour the Madison Mallards stadium and take in a baseball game, all at the expense of the Northwoods Baseball League. They are proposing to assist the city of Kenosha in renovating Simmons Field on Sheridan Road. Click here to read a previous article on this subject: Northwoods League Proposes to Renovate Simmons Field. Madison’s stadium seats 6,000, while Kenosha’s would seat in the neighborhood of 1,700 to 2,000.
Cliff Johnson made a comment during the Citizens’ Comments portion of the meeting. Johnson stated that he thinks “this would be a great thing for Kenosha. It will increase business on Sheridan Road, and will be an asset to the city.” He gave his full support. Bosman then invited him to come along on the bus trip.
Other business which took place at the meeting:
- The commission unanimously approved the mayor’s resolution to approve a certified survey map for property located at 2908 – 33rd Avenue. Alderperson Tod Ohnstad spoke in favor of this resolution. He said that Mr. Vena, the property owner, is working to get his existing lot split in two. His existing home would remain on one lot, and this approval would then allow him to build a home on the second lot.
- The commission also unanimously approved the resolution to approve a two-lot certified survey map in the extraterritorial plat review area of the Town of Paris, at 13215 – 7th Street. Everett Myers, the property owner, was present and spoke. He told the commission that he is entertaining an offer to purchase his farm, and he is looking to split off the land. Because this plat is not located within the city limits, a review is required by State statute. Alderperson Anthony Kennedy was questioning the reasoning behind this, and he was convinced by the staff that the city doesn’t want to waive its right to review. Jeff LaBahn, community development and inspections director, gave an example of when this could be important. “A large subdivision could be proposed which could impact the city. It would be good to know,” he said. Alderperson Jan Michalski stated that he had no objection to this resolution and that he would be voting for it, but he wanted to know what effect it would have on the landowner if the commission did not approve this resolution. LaBahn replied that Myers wouldn’t be able to record it; it would have a negative impact on the homeowner. The mayor commented that the area could become part of the city at some point in time. They have always blessed past reviews, and Bosman said that this should not be an exception.
- The request for a six-month extension of the conditional use permit for an 1,875 square-foot addition to Aurora Medical Center at 10400 – 75th Street, was also approved unanimously. Apparently, there were some complications which arose that need to be worked through with the company before the addition can move forward. Kennedy asked if this was their second extension, but it is not; it’s their first. It was confirmed that they can request another six-month extension, if needed, but then they would have to re-apply.
- The fourth and final agenda item was a proposal by Alderperson Jesse Downing to create sub-paragraphs in the city’s zoning ordinance to allow golf and/or batting range uses as a permitted accessory use in manufacturing districts. This is currently allowed in commercial districts. Now, it is being proposed to allow it in industrial districts. The request is being driven by a tenant who is wanting to put batting cages in less than 50% of his building. His request cannot be granted with the current ordinance. Approving this would allow this throughout the entire city. Commission member Anderson Lattimore was concerned about added traffic and parking issues. Alderperson Jan Michalski wanted to know how other tenants in the industrial park felt about the issue. Commission member Ron Stevens replied that, in this case, it was reviewed by the Industrial Park Review Committee, and they showed their support. Kennedy stated that he had a problem with this. “People know the zoning when they go in.” He proposed deferring the matter until the commission’s next meeting (in two weeks), and asked that the owner of the property be present so that the commission could ask questions of the owner. Kennedy also asked the staff for a map of the city showing all of the impacted areas, every industrial park in the city zoned either M1 or M2. He also asked for occupancy information of these areas. LaBahn stated that he didn’t think they could deliver what Kennedy was asking for. Kennedy then modified his request to an overview of the industrial areas and, if utilization information is available, to provide that as well. Bosman wanted to know if this was prevalent in other cities. Michalski stated that he felt that the excuse of a bad economy might be becoming an overused excuse for businesses to get everything they ask for. He was fearful that the city would then “be stuck” with ordinances that didn’t make any sense just to accommodate business owners.
The next meeting will take place on Thursday, June 21, at 5:00 pm.