News Flash

Posted on: May 20, 2019

Local officials seethe as Republicans block move on 'dark stores' loophole

Village of Somers President George Stoner said it’s just one excuse after another.

“They say it would be bad for business,” Stoner said. “It’s not bad for business. Businesses need to pay their fair share.”

By JEFFREY ZAMPANTI, Racine Journal Times Dark Store Loopholes
Posted on: March 5, 2019

Will this be the year to close “Dark store” loophole? How it impacts you

MADISON (WKOW) — As Governor Evers tours the state to rally support for the budget he introduced last week, closing the dark store loophole is poised to become a big issue at the state capitol.

Emilee Fannon, WKOW Dark Store Loopholes
Posted on: February 28, 2019

Evers to close controversial ‘Dark Store’ loophole

This method of assessment has proved controversial, as organizations like the League of Wisconsin Municipalities see the method as a gap in the tax law that allows big corporations to pay less in taxes, forcing Wisconsin residents to pay more.

Molly Devore, Badger Herald Dark Store Loopholes
Posted on: January 11, 2019

Sheboygan voters will have their say on 'dark store' tax loopholes in April election

SHEBOYGAN - The common council voted unanimously Monday to add an advisory referendum that will appear on the April ballot, asking Sheboygan residents if the Wisconsin legislature should consider passing legislation to close....

Diana Dombrowski, Sheboygan Press Dark Store Loopholes
Posted on: January 7, 2019

As Big Retailers Seek to Cut Their Tax Bills, Towns Bear the Brunt

WAUWATOSA, Wis. — With astonishing range and rapidity, big-box retailers and corporate giants are using an aggressive legal tactic to shrink their property tax bills, a strategy that is costing local governments and school districts around the country....

Patricia Cohen, The New York Times Dark Store Loopholes
Posted on: December 30, 2018

2019 Outlook: Lowes, Wal-Mart Property Tax Loophole Under Scrutiny in Wisconsin

Krause said wider application... would have a devastating impact on her community,,, an across-the-board application of dark store...would result in a 17% tax shift to the residential sector in Wauwatosa, costing the ave homeowner $1,100 more.

Michael J. Bologna, Bloomberg Tax Dark Store Loopholes
Posted on: December 30, 2018

Closing the Dark Store Loophole? Referendum results deliver resounding ‘yes’...

On average, 78.65% voters answered “yes” to ballot questions asking if the loophole should be closed. The rejection vote was far bigger in individual places. In Dane County, 91.79% of voters called for ending the loophole, as did... 87.88% in Glendale.

Dan Shaw, Shepherd Express Dark Store Loopholes
Posted on: November 19, 2018

How the “dark stores” loophole helps big-box retailers evade millions in property taxes

“(S)uggesting is that we use these dark stores as comparables to their ongoing stores, even though the bundle of rights is different,” Winter says. But “to use that as a comparable, without an adjustment, for the value of an ongoing operation, doesn’t .."

Sam Bloch, The New Food Economy Dark Store Loopholes
Posted on: November 19, 2018

Continued Reaction To So-Called Dark Store Loopholes

A guest (Jerry Deschane) from the League of Wisconsin Municipalities joined us on Nov. 13 to discuss the results to dark store referenda questions and talk about what he hopes is next on this issue.

Breann Schossow, Wisconsin Public Radio Dark Store Loopholes
Posted on: November 19, 2018

Tax 'loophole' critics win big on Election Day, but prospects for real change unclear

Voters in 23 Wisconsin municipalities overwhelmingly backed nonbinding referendums on Tuesday to close the so-called “dark store loophole,” which its detractors say unfairly shifts the property tax burden from large retailers to homeowners.

Chris Rickert, Wisconsin State Journal Dark Store Loopholes
Posted on: November 19, 2018

Local and state leaders: Voters make 'dark store' directive clear

“It is an important issue to the village...,” Steinbrink said. “It affects small businesses & residential taxpayers. It is actually an easy fix. Without action, it is becoming increasingly difficult to keep taxes low and services good.”

JILL TATGE-ROZELL, Kenosha News Dark Store Loopholes
Posted on: November 19, 2018

Rock, Walworth counties OK dark store advisory referendums

Voters in Rock and Walworth counties overwhelmingly passed advisory referendums calling for an end to the dark store legal theory.

The referendums passed with more than 70 percent support in both counties.

Jim Dayton, Gazette Extra Dark Store Loopholes
Posted on: November 19, 2018

Wisconsin election: Voters favor closing 'dark stores' property tax loophole

"(B)ut it certainly, I think, speaks volumes. ... That's pretty significant when you've got 50,000 voters telling their elected officials that we want this loophole closed," said Outagamie County Board Chairman Jeff Nooyen...

Alison Dirr, Appleton Post-Crescent Dark Store Loopholes
Posted on: October 29, 2018

City approves nearly $130,000 combined payout to settle Lowe's 'dark store' lawsuit

"More than $129,000 in local taxpayer money will go to Lowe's after city leaders settled a lawsuit with the national home improvement chain."

John Sadler, Oshkosh Northwestern Dark Store Loopholes
Posted on: October 29, 2018

Officials urge support of Dark Store referendums

"Antaramian said if the loophole is not closed it will amount to a $350 increase on an average city home.

This comes as residential taxpayers’ share of the state’s overall property tax pie has increased to 67 percent..."

JILL TATGE-ROZELL - Kenosha News Dark Store Loopholes
Posted on: October 29, 2018

VOTERS TO WEIGH IN ON 'DARK STORE LOOPHOLE'

The report showed of the 11 municipalities studied, value losses could range from 4 to 14% - resulting in a $187 million shift to other taxpayers. In Beloit, multiple businesses have disputed their property tax assessments, including the Staples...."

AUSTIN MONTGOMERY, Beloit Daily News Dark Store Loopholes
Posted on: October 29, 2018

“Everyday the state Legislature does not act to close these loopholes, taxes are increasing for all

“Everyday the state Legislature does not act to close these loopholes, taxes are increasing for all homeowners, small businesses and other property owners in Kenosha and the rest of the state,” Kenosha Ald. Dan Prozanski

JILL TATGE-ROZELL - Kenosha News Dark Store Loopholes
Posted on: October 23, 2018

Kenosha county officials tackle ‘dark store loophole’ issue, put referendum on November ballot

Stoner is the Village of Somers president and said the issue of the "dark store loophole" needs to be dealt with quickly. "Just for the year 2017 for Sam's Club, we have to give back $13,795 and to Walmart, we have to give back $25,305 and that's just...

Jonathon Gregg, Fox 6 Dark Store Loopholes
Posted on: October 18, 2018

EDITORIAL: It’s time to pay attention to the dark store loophole

Manawa is a quaint city in Waupaca County with roughly 1,300 people who found out the hard way the damage the dark store loophole can do in communities.

Last year, TreeHouse Foods successfully argued in mitigation that the value of a food processing...

Ben Rodgers, Editor, The Press Dark Store Loopholes
Posted on: October 18, 2018

VIDEO: Local officials push to close dark store loopholes

The group implored candidates for governor to be a leader on closing the tax law loophole.

WBAY2 Dark Store Loopholes
Posted on: October 18, 2018

Many voters to see referendums on so-called 'dark store loophole'

"The less in taxes that commercial properties have to pay the more everyone else has to pay and that's primarily homeowners and businesses," explained Witynski.

Amber Luckett, Fox 11 News Dark Store Loopholes
Posted on: October 18, 2018

Five things to know about the 'dark store' referendum on midterm ballots

"The one thing that gets lost in talking about the details is the reason local governments are concerned," said Curt Witynski, deputy director of the League of Wisconsin Municipalities. "They're concerned about the fairness of the property-tax system."

Natalie Wickman, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel Dark Store Loopholes
Posted on: October 10, 2018

‘It’s not right:’ Elected officials urge candidates for governor to close tax loopholes

"Our residents should not be having to incur this cost for an unfair tax shift," said Kathy Ehley, mayor of Wauwatosa. The leaders drafted a letter seeking relief from the so-called "dark store"/ "Walgreens loopholes"....

Beverly Taylor, Fox 6 News Dark Store Loopholes
Posted on: October 10, 2018

Local Leaders Demand Big Store Tax Reform

The effect of these loopholes is that property tax revenues from these large companies and corporations go down, and the tax burden paying for essential services like police and fire is shifted to homeowners and small business owners.

Graham Kilmer, Urban Milwaukee Dark Store Loopholes
Posted on: October 7, 2018

Burlington to consider joining dark store tax battle

Whenever big box retailers such as Walmart use the dark store loophole to avoid paying higher taxes, residents and small businesses pay the price, which has caused most state municipalities to urge lawmakers to stop the practice.

Jason Arndt, Editor, My Racine County Dark Store Loopholes
Posted on: October 7, 2018

Panel wants property assessment loopholes closed

Homeowners in Wisconsin already pay 70% of property taxes statewide. And Douglas County want to make sure that share doesn't grow. But a loophole in Wisconsin law is helping big box and chain stores use tax avoidance strategies that shift the burden....

Shelley Nelson, Superior Telegram Dark Store Loopholes
Posted on: September 21, 2018

La Crosse area officials: Dark store loophole unfair to homeowners

What’s known as the dark store loophole unfairly shifts the tax burden from big box stores to homeowners and small businesses La Crosse’s elected officials said Monday during a town hall event with the area’s state representatives.

Jourdan Vian, La Crosse Tribune Dark Store Loopholes
Posted on: September 21, 2018

Walmart sues city over tax funds

MONROE — A well-known corporation has filed a lawsuit against the city to recover funds it claims the city took illegitimately through property taxes.

Bridget Cooke, Monroe Times Dark Store Loopholes
Posted on: September 12, 2018

Groups make pitch for and against 'dark stores'

For example, McHugh said the Walgreens store at 6125 Durand Ave. sold for roughly $6.3 million but, “When they appealed their assessment, they asked that it be lowered to $1.75 million.

Ricardo Torres, Racine Journal Times Dark Store Loopholes
Posted on: September 12, 2018

Municipalities, businesses butting heads over “dark stores”

The battle over so-called “dark stores” is creeping into more Wisconsin communities like Sturgeon Bay. According to the Wis Policy Forum, 79 Wisconsin communities had appeals of their property taxes filed against them in 2017....

Tim Kowols, Door County Daily News Dark Store Loopholes
Posted on: August 28, 2018

Are “Dark Store” Property Tax Challenges on the Rise?

“Dark store” appeals are made by businesses – often retailers – seeking to lower their property tax assessments and overall tax bill. Our survey suggests they may be rising in Wisconsin.

Wisconsin Policy Forum, Focus Newsletter #18 Dark Store Loopholes
Posted on: August 28, 2018

'Dark store' appeals on the rise in Wisconsin

Jerry Deschane, executive director of the League, said he hoped the latest round of appeals by large retailers would get lawmakers' attention. "This thing is a snowball and the more it's allowed to run downhill, the bigger it's going to get," he said.

Patrick Marley, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel Dark Store Loopholes
Posted on: August 27, 2018

Shifting the Tax Burden

Shifting the tax burden: If plaintiffs win lawsuits over property tax assessments, taxpayers could see $561K on their tab
Taxpayers could be on the hook for $561,183 if plaintiffs in 11 civil lawsuits challenging property tax assessments filed . . . .

Christena T. O’Brien, Leader-Telegram Dark Store Loopholes
Posted on: August 24, 2018

City, Walmart settle value dispute--for now

A dispute between Walmart and Monona officials over the value of the business’ property has been settled, with a few elected officials saying it’s the best the city could hope for in the short term.

Kevin Passon for The Herald-Independent Dark Store Loopholes
Posted on: August 17, 2018

Dark Store Reform Important to All of Us

The city of Oshkosh is taking a stand to address a disturbing trend in property valuation. This trend is shifting the bur-den of property taxes from big-box retail stores to homes and small businesses. The term you may be familiar with is
“dark store.”

Oshkosh Mayor Seven Cummings, Oshkosh Herald Dark Store Loopholes
Posted on: August 16, 2018

Lasse: Dark store Theory is a con

I am a developer in the city of Janesville and have worked on numerous projects over the last 25 years including the Kmart/Festival redevelopment, Oasis/Menards redevelopment, Castle Metals, Upper Lakes Foods, IPM Foods and ANGI Energy Systems . . . .

Tom Lasse, GazetteXtra Dark Store Loopholes
Posted on: August 15, 2018

West Allis voters loudly demand Legislators close the so-called dark store loophole

Local voters in Tuesday's primary election stood solidly behind West Allis officials in wanting the state legislature to close the so-called dark store loophole that has resulted in big-box stores getting drastic reductions in their property tax . . . .

Jane Ford-Stewart, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel Dark Store Loopholes
Posted on: August 17, 2018

10 new lawsuits protest Eau Claire tax bills

Ten additional civil lawsuits — seeking more than $458,000 in property tax refunds — have been filed against the city of Eau Claire. Six of those have been filed by KT Real Estate Holdings . . . concerning six Kwik Trip locations; two by Menard Inc. . .

Christena T. O'Brien, Leader-Telegram 8-1-18 Dark Store Loopholes
Posted on: August 14, 2018

Marshfield may join Dark Store fight

The city of Marshfield may join the Dark Store tax loophole campaign, as Wisconsin municipalities band together against some “big box” retailers.

The loophole involves active retail stores being taxed as if they were . . . .

Chris Leonhardt, Hub City Times Dark Store Loopholes
Posted on: August 10, 2018

Janesville Residents Could See Higher Tax Bill due to Dark Store Law Suites

The property tax bill of an average Janesville home could increase by more than $26 if pending property assessment appeals against the city are successful. Janesville is involved in 11 pending appeals from local businesses. They are seeking a . . . .

Janesville Gazette Xtra Dark Store Loopholes
Posted on: August 10, 2018

Dark Store Loophole: Walmart and Menards Take Action Against City to Lower Assessed Value

City Communicates OnFocus – The Finance, Budget and Personnel Committee approved making a $2,500 donation to the League of Wisconsin Municipalities to help in their fight against the Dark Store Loophole currently used in Wisconsin.
“Wal-Mart and . . . .

Focus on Marshfield Dark Store Loopholes
Posted on: August 9, 2018

Roundy's sues Shorewood over 'excessive' Metro Market assessment

Roundy's has filed a lawsuit against the village, claiming the assessed value of the Metro Market is "excessive." The village has assessed the two-story grocery store at $25.3 million, but the complaint filed by Roundy's claims the grocery store . . . .

Jeff Rumage, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel 8-8-18 Dark Store Loopholes
Posted on: August 9, 2018

City Manager Mark Freitag, Janesville, Dark Store Op-Ed

In an editorial published August 5, 2018, the Janesville Gazette criticized the City for advocating for the state to put an end to the “dark store” property assessment loophole which shifts the property tax burden from large corporations . . . .

Mark Freitag, Janesville Gazette Dark Store Loopholes
Posted on: August 6, 2018

City may aid dark store lobbying efforts

Monona city officials appear to have temporarily settled a pair of lawsuits by Walmart challenging its property assessment, but that doesn’t mean the city is giving up on the broader issue. Alders on Monday will consider a resolution to donate. . . .

Kevin Passon for The Herald-Independent Dark Store Loopholes
Posted on: July 23, 2018

Sturgeon Bay Wal-Mart gets reassessed in dark store case

The city of Sturgeon Bay and Wal-Mart will head to mediation this fall to discuss the store’s current property assessment. Last September, the Wal-Mart Real Estate Business Trust filed a suit against the city in Door County Circuit Court . . .

Tim Kowols, Door County News, July 20, 2018 Dark Store Loopholes
Posted on: July 10, 2018

Pleasant Prairie approves agreement for hotel development

PLEASANT PRAIRIE — The Village Board here has unanimously approved a developer’s agreement for a future corporate campus with a hotel and other services in the LakeView Corporate Park.

Terry Flores, Kenosha News in The Journal Times Dark Store Loopholes
Posted on: July 9, 2018

With bills blocked, get familiar with 'dark store' referendum

Gov. Scott Walker is ready to sign bipartisan legislation to close the “dark stores” loophole that allows big retailers to curtail their tax assessments.
He made that clear during his visit to Kenosha for the Kenosha Civic Veterans Parade.

Kenosha News, July 9, 2018 Dark Store Loopholes
Posted on: April 25, 2018

Growing Concern Over Dark Store Loophole

The “dark store” controversy now ranks with the failure to pay for long-term highway construction as the most difficult issues facing the governor and legislators seeking reelection in November.

Stevens Walters, Urban Milwaukee Dark Store Loopholes
Posted on: April 6, 2018

Democratic legislators committed to closing ‘dark store loophole’

State Rep. Jimmy Anderson and other Democratic legislators are assuring Dane County Board members and other local officials of their commitment to legislation that would close the “dark store loophole” used by big box retailers to lower their tax. . .

The Herald Independent April 4, 2018 Dark Store Loopholes
Posted on: April 2, 2018

Outagamie county sets referendum on dark store tax loopholes

APPLETON - Voters in Outagamie County will get an opportunity to add their voice to the debate over Wisconsin's so-called dark store tax loopholes.

The County Board voted unanimously Tuesday to hold an advisory referendum on the issue . . .

Duke Behnke, USA Today Network-Wisconsin Dark Store Loopholes
Posted on: February 26, 2018

Council denies excessive tax claims

During open session, the Menomonie City Council passed a resolution asking state legislators to approve current legislation that would close property law loopholes used by some national chain stores to substantially reduce the property taxes they pay.

Barbara Lyon The Dunn County News Dark Store Loopholes
Posted on: February 26, 2018

Compromise on how to tax large retailers falls apart in wee hours of Assembly finale

A last-ditch bid in the state Assembly to address efforts by large retailers to lower their property-tax assessments, which critics say shifts tax costs to homeowners, has collapsed, Assembly Speaker Robin Vos said early Friday.

Mark Sommerhauser Wisconsin State Journal Dark Store Loopholes
Posted on: February 22, 2018

WalMart Wants Tax Refund Due to "Dark Store Theory"

Wal-mart is contesting the property assessment of its Minocqua store, contending the property is worth much less and thus it’s due a refund of thousands of dollars it paid in property taxes.

Dean S. Acheson Dark Store Loopholes
Posted on: February 19, 2018

City takes on 'dark store' tax strategy

The City Council may take action Monday on a resolution that would ask the state Legislature to act on ending “dark store” strategies in the city and state.
As defined by the League of Wisconsin Municipalities, “dark store theory” is . . . .

Ben Rueter Leader-Telegram Dark Store Loopholes
Posted on: February 12, 2018

Close the Dark Stores Tax Loophole

Would GOP legislators rather raise property taxes for others than lose political donations?
Earlier this week, Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald (R-Juneau) and Assembly Speaker Robin Vos (R-Burlington) declared that legislation to reign in . . . .

State Sen. Janis Ringhand, Urban Milwaukee Dark Store Loopholes
Posted on: December 15, 2017

Columbus wants Dark Store loophole closed

The city of Columbus joined leaders across Wisconsin in designating Dec. 11 as “Dark Store Day” to draw attention to legislation designed to close the dark store loophole. As big box retail chains and single tenant commercial properties use these. . .

Columbus Journal December 11, 2019 Dark Store Loopholes
Posted on: December 15, 2017

Wisconsin 'dark store' cases threaten to hike your property taxes

Appleton Post-Crescent Large chain-store retailers are trying to cut their property assessments by more than $700 million across Wisconsin — potentially forcing other taxpayers to pay more to fund local public services, a USA TODAY NETWORK-Wisconsin...

Madeleine Behr, Doug Schneider and Haley BeMiller Dark Store Loopholes
Posted on: December 15, 2017

Mayor Fights for Fairness

Superior Mayor Jim Paine joined local leaders across Wisconsin to designate Dec. 11 as Dark Store Day. The goal was to call attention to legislation designed to close the "dark store loophole," property tax avoidance tactics that aren't available to. . .

Shelly Nelson, Superior Telegram Dark Store Loopholes
Posted on: December 13, 2017

Local leaders discuss big box tax implications

Provisions in a newly proposed bill could halt the "Dark Store Strategy" in which commercial property owners argue for the same lower tax assessment given to other stores in town that are vacant. At the heart of the issue: Should a big box store . . . .

Fox 11 News Dark Store Loopholes
Posted on: December 13, 2017

A Recent Court Ruling Shines New Light on the Dark Store Appraisal Theory

On Friday morning, October 20, at the Hotel Phillips in downtown Kansas City, word spread among those attending IAAO’s Fall Leadership Days that the Michigan Supreme Court had reached a much-anticipated decision on a big-box/dark store case.

Magazine Association of Assessing Officers Dark Store Loopholes
Posted on: December 13, 2017

Dark Store Day Shines Light on Corporate Loophole

Local municipal leaders supported by the Wisconsin League of Municipalities urged people to contact their state representatives on Monday, Dec. 11, Dark Store Day.
Dark Store Day was formed from a growing concern . . . .

Ben Rogers, The Press Dark Store Loopholes
Posted on: December 13, 2017

City leaders gather in Ashwaubenon for "Dark Store Day"

It's a tax avoidance strategy by commercial retailers such as Menards, Walgreens, and CVS Who ask to pay property taxes equal to stores that are vacant or boarded up, when in reality, their stores are booming with business.

Jordan Lamers, Wearegreenbay.com Dark Store Loopholes
Posted on: December 13, 2017

In Ashwaubenon, cities and villages demand legislature close dark-stores loophole

Local leaders from Oshkosh to Howard gathered in Brown County on Monday to demand state lawmakers change a law that they say shifts property tax burdens from chain retailers to homeowners and small businesses. . . .

Doug Schneider USA TODAY NETWORK Green Bay Gazette Dark Store Loopholes
Posted on: December 13, 2017

Dark Store Day: 19 mayors speak out against tax loophole that allows some big box retailers to pay l

Nineteen city and village mayors, including Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett on Monday, December 11th spoke out against so-called "dark store" practices. The mayors called it a tax loophole that allows big box retailers to pay millions less in taxes . . . .

Jonathon Gregg, Fox 6 Dark Store Loopholes
Posted on: December 11, 2017

Meijer tax appeal costs Merrillville $2.3M

Merrillville Town Council is tightening its purse strings after losing a tax appeal from Meijer totaling almost $2.3 million. "We'll see a salary ordinance with no raises because of this and we may have to lay some people off," Town Manager . . . .

Karen Caffarini, Chicago Post-Tribune Dark Store Loopholes

News Flash

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Posted on: February 6, 2019

FCC2018 Small Cell Order & Model Ordinance-Siting of Wireless Facilities

photos of small cell receivers

The Federal Communications Commission’s (FCC’s) 2018 Small Cell Order, which largely took effect January 14, 2019, contains new and significant limitations on a municipality’s ability to regulate wireless facilities in local rights-of-way (ROW). To assist...

Read on...

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News Flash

Posted on: March 7, 2019

City of Algoma

Algoma

How does the levy limit impact your community's services?    It restricts the amount of sidewalks we can repair/replace and as the fixed costs increase (utilities such as heat, electric, water, sewer, etc.) and our revenues have...

Learn more about the impact on Algoma...

Impacts of Levy Limits
Posted on: March 19, 2019

Village of Blanchardville

Blanchardville

How does the levy limit impact your community's services?  The 2018 net new construction is the first in over 10 years. The Village has had zero to negative growth since the early 2000s. All of the other expenses continue to climb and we cannot k...

Learn more about the impact on Blanchardville...

Impacts of Levy Limits
Posted on: March 13, 2019

City of Chetek

Chetek

How does the levy limit impact your community's services?  Subsidies for the ambulance service and fire district go up so it cuts into our levy limits - we cannot adjust for those increases. Our library budget has not increased for 6 years - We h...

Learn more about the impact on Chetek...

Impacts of Levy Limits
Posted on: March 19, 2019

City of Chilton

Chilton

How does the levy limit impact your community's services?  The levy limit hurts us as a small community dramatically. Cultural activities such as youth recreation programs have been cut pushing them onto community organized youth clubs. We are lo...

Learn more about the impact on Chilton...

Impacts of Levy Limits
Posted on: March 7, 2019

Village of Eden

Eden

How does the levy limit impact your community's services?    WE ARE UNABLE TO PROVIDE ANY ADDITIONAL SERVICES THAN THE ONES THAT ARE CURRENTLY OFFERED. WE NEED TO BORROW FOR STREET PROJECTS. WE ARE ALLOWED TO TAKE FROM THE TAX ROLL LESS ...

Learn more about the impact on Eden...

Impacts of Levy Limits
Posted on: March 7, 2019

City of Fountain City

Fountain City

How does the levy limit impact your community's services?    Over the years, reduced our police department from one full time officer and multiple part-time officers, to just two part-time officers which combined only work about...

Learn more about the impact on Fountain City...

Impacts of Levy Limits
Posted on: March 19, 2019

City of Hartford

Hartford

How does the levy limit impact your community's services?  The increase in net new construction is not keeping up with added need for services thus different departments need to hold back on expanding services and personnel which weakens our over...

Learn more about the impact on Hartford...

Impacts of Levy Limits
Posted on: March 13, 2019

City of Horicon

Horicon

How does the levy limit impact your community's services?  Unfortunately the City has been forced to become reactive to things as funds are not available to be proactive. Services are struggling to be maintained and certainly we are unable to pro...

Learn more about the impact on Horicon...

Impacts of Levy Limits
Posted on: March 7, 2019

Village of Hortonville

Hortonville

How does the levy limit impact your community's services?    Level of service has remained consistent but we are cutting in other areas.

How does the levy limit impact your community's budgeting practices and finances, eg, your a...

Learn more about the impact on Hortonville...

Impacts of Levy Limits
Posted on: March 7, 2019

City of Kewaunee

Kewaunee

How does the levy limit impact your community's services?    A new report issued by the Public Policy Forum clearly shows that Wisconsin is more dependent upon property taxes than any other Midwestern states. In my opinion, this fact put...

Learn more about the impact on Kewaunee...

Impacts of Levy Limits
Posted on: March 19, 2019

Village of Kingston

Kingston

How does the levy limit impact your community's services?  Village provides garbage collection at a cost of $32,000 per year which is a large portion of our budget. If we charge for garbage collection then we need to decrease our shared revenue.....

Learn more about the impact on Kingston...

Impacts of Levy Limits
Posted on: May 17, 2019

Village of Marshall

Marshall

How does the levy limit impact your community's services? Overall from 2012-2018 Marshall has average 0.43% in net new construction. Because of this the Village has had to continually develop the model of doing more with less. We have had to cont...

Learn more about the impact on Marshall...

Impacts of Levy Limits
Posted on: March 7, 2019

Village of Merton

Merton

How does the levy limit impact your community's budgeting practices and finances, eg, your amount of borrowing?     We are not going to be able to keep up with road repairs in the future. Road construction costs and going up and the new ...

Learn more about the impact on Merton...

Impacts of Levy Limits
Posted on: March 7, 2019

Village of Monticello

Monticello

How does the levy limit impact your community's services?    Had a successful levy increase with passing of referendum - $218,000/year for next five years. (Above budget number includes this increase.) Only way to keep employees...

Learn more about the impact on Monticello...

Impacts of Levy Limits
Posted on: March 19, 2019

Village of Nashotah

Nashotah

How does the levy limit impact your community's services?  Limits our ability to pass on increases from vendors for products and services, limits ability to perform road maintenance.

How does the levy limit impact your community's budgeting practi...

Learn more about the impact on Nashotah...

Impacts of Levy Limits
Posted on: March 27, 2019

North Shore Fire Dept.

North Shore Fire truck

North Shore Fire Department Communities Impacted by ERP

A common theme when discussing how to manage costs in provision of local government services is through shared services and consolidations. The North Shore Fire Department has been a leader in the Sta...

North Shore Fire Dept. Impacted by Levy Limits

Additional Info... Impacts of Levy Limits
Posted on: March 7, 2019

Village of Oostburg

Oostburg

2018 Net New Construction - 5.12%

Impacts of Levy Limits
Posted on: March 13, 2019

City of Osseo

Osseo

How does the levy limit impact your community's services?  We have had to limit the amount of cold mix we put on our streets and our street sweeping is minimal. Animal complaints are on the rise do to feral cats and other animals that we have bee...

Learn more about the impact on Osseo...

Impacts of Levy Limits
Posted on: March 13, 2019

Village of Palmyra

Palmyra

How does the levy limit impact your community's services?  We have a difficult time trying to improve services and still stay within our budget. If one department's budget goes up money must be taken from other areas of the Village budget to stay...

Learn more about the impact on Palmyra...

Impacts of Levy Limits
Posted on: March 13, 2019

Village of Plover

Plover

How does the levy limit impact your community's services?  Are forced to apply what little is received due to growth due to new construction to fund annual cost-of-service increases in existing programs. Nothing is available to increase in servic...

Learn more about the impact on Plover...

Impacts of Levy Limits
Posted on: May 17, 2019

Village of Pound

Pound

How does the levy limit impact your community's services? We can't offer services that we would like to due to lack of funds.

How does the levy limit impact your community's budgeting practices and finances, eg, your amount of borrowing? ...

Learn more about the impact on Pound...

Impacts of Levy Limits
Posted on: March 13, 2019

Village of Rib Lake

Rib Lake

How does the levy limit impact your community's services?  Due to expenses rising in cost but with little or no increase in levy, we can barely maintain what we have and not pursue any new opportunities for improvements to the village. If we want...

Learn more about the impact on Rib Lake...

Impacts of Levy Limits
Posted on: March 7, 2019

Village of Rosholt

Rosholt

How does the levy limit impact your community's services?    We haven't been able to consider hiring a building/inspector/zoning administrator. 1/2 as much being appropriated towards future street projects.

How does the levy limit impact ...

Learn more about the impact on Rosholt...

Impacts of Levy Limits
Posted on: March 7, 2019

Village of Sharon

Sharon

How does the levy limit impact your community's services?    This past year, we were not able to fill a full time police officer position because of financial reasons. Additionally we haven't been able to replace equipment in ou...

Learn more about the impact on Sharon...

Impacts of Levy Limits
Posted on: March 19, 2019

Village of Shiocton

Shiocton

How does the levy limit impact your community's services?  Since the freeze on levy limits our Village has had to take out loans to replace equipment and repair streets. Our streets are getting worse and the patching is not going to hold much lon...

Learn more about the impact on Shiocton...

Impacts of Levy Limits
Posted on: March 7, 2019

Village of Valders

Valders

How does the levy limit impact your community's services?   We have managed to not have to much impact on our services. But everything else gets cut. Equipment replacement pushed out 5 to 7 years more, which results in higher equipment m...

Learn more about the impact on Valders...

Impacts of Levy Limits
Posted on: March 7, 2019

City of Washburn

Washburn

How does the levy limit impact your community's services?    Limitations on staff - FTE's have been decreasing over the years. Strain on capital equipment purchases that do not have a long life that we do not want to borrow for ...

Learn more about the impact on Washburn...

Impacts of Levy Limits
Posted on: March 7, 2019

City of Waupaca

Waupaca

How does the levy limit impact your community's services?    We have not cut any services at this time. 

How does the levy limit impact your community's budgeting practices and finances, eg, your amount of borrowing?&...

Learn more about the impact on Waupaca...

Impacts of Levy Limits
Posted on: March 8, 2019

Village of West Salem

West Salem

How does the levy limit impact your community's services?    West Salem had always prided itself on being one of only two municipalities in the State of Wisconsin without any general obligation debt. West Salem has always been frugal wit...

Learn more about the impact on West Salem

Impacts of Levy Limits

News Flash

News Flash

Posted on: March 26, 2019

Court Declines Invitation to Revamp Governmental Immunity

Courts 369, Liability 435

Courts 369 Wisconsin Supreme Court declined to adopt interpretation of governmental immunity statute that would reverse longstanding precedent and expand municipal liability under sec. 893.80(4) explaining that to do so would create problems for governmen...

Claire Silverman, The Municipality, March 2019

Claire Silverman, The Municipality, March 2019 Legal Articles
Posted on: March 26, 2019

Panhandling Ordinances after Reed and Norton

Licensing/Regulation 399, Ordinances/Resolutions 511: Legal comment discussing the constitutionality of panhandling ordinances in the wake of Reed v. Town of Gilbert, 135 S.Ct. 2218 (2015) and Norton v. City of Springfield, 806 F.3d 411 (7th Cir. 2015).

Maria Davis, The Municipality, March 2019 Legal Articles
Posted on: March 26, 2019

Nuisance Concerts Separate Events

Liability 434, Nuisances 160: Concerts constituting a nuisance are considered separate events for purposes of the 120-day notice timeline in Wisconsin Statute § 893.80(1d). Yacht Club at Sister Bay Condo Assn., Inc. v. Village of Sister Bay, 2019 WI 4.

Maria Davis, The Municipality, March 2019 Legal Articles
Posted on: March 26, 2019

Wisconsin Cities Have Class!

Municipal Corporations 59: Provides overview of Wis. Stat. sec. 62.05 which classifies cities as 1st, 2nd, 3rd and 4th class cities based on population as well as procedure for altering classification and some differences between the different classes.

Claire Silverman, The Municipality, March, 2019 Legal Articles
Posted on: November 30, 2018

FRSA Preempts Ordinance Prohibiting Trains from Obstructing RR Crossings

The Wisconsin Court of Appeals recently held that the Federal Railroad Safety Act (FRSA) and regulations promulgated pursuant to that act preempt a City of Weyauwega ordinance prohibiting any train from obstructing, for more than 10 minutes. . . .

Claire Silverman, the Municipality December 2018 Legal Articles
Posted on: November 30, 2018

Local Government Emergency Powers

Is your municipality prepared to deal with an emergency? Recent disasters
in communities across the state, like flooding and explosions, highlight
the importance of being prepared to cope with local emergencies.

Claire Silverman, the Municipality December 2018 Legal Articles
Posted on: November 8, 2018

Municipal Publication Requirements

This article provides a basic overview of municipal publication requirements and addresses common questions that arise with regard to those requirements.

Claire Silverman, the Municipality November 2018 Legal Articles
Posted on: November 8, 2018

Kenosha Program "Gets the Lead Out!"

There has been a surge in public awareness of the risks of lead exposure in drinking water. Exposure to lead has been linked to adverse health effects in infants, young children, and pregnant women, and is potentially harmful to adults.

St. Peter, Kobza and Walker Smith November 2018 Legal Articles
Posted on: November 8, 2018

A Silent Revolution of Agency Review

Municipalities frequently interact with state and federal agencies, and they sometimes need courts to review whether an agency decision is arbitrary, an abuse of discretion, or otherwise contrary to law.

Barry J. Blonien, the Municipality October 2018 Legal Articles
Posted on: November 8, 2018

Supreme Court Review for States and Local Governments 2018

The State and Local Legal Center (SLLC) files Supreme Court amicus curiae briefs on behalf of the Big Seven national organizations* representing state and local governments.
Big Cases
In South Dakota v. Wayfair** the Supreme Court ruled . . .

Lisa Soronen the Municipality September 2018 Legal Articles
Posted on: August 3, 2018

Removal of Officers: Governing Body Procedures and the Recall Procedure

Can a governing body remove a member who repeatedly fails to show up for meetings? What about a member who always shows up but seems to focus all his or her energy on creating dissent? What about a member who reveals information discussed in closed . . .

Claire Silverman, the Municipality August 2018 Legal Articles
Posted on: June 29, 2018

Determining the Residency of Municipal Officers

At the time they are elected, members of municipal governing bodies and other local elected officers must be resident electors of the municipality. Common council members representing aldermanic districts must not only reside within the city . . .

Claire Silverman, the Municipality July 2018 Legal Articles
Posted on: June 29, 2018

Special Assessments--A Common Way to Recover Costs of Public Improvements

Several months ago a state legislator called me into his office to discuss
a question he had received from a constituent. The constituent had called to complain about the city charging her a special assessment of over $1,000 for sidewalk and curb . . .

Curt Witynski in July 2018 the Municipality Legal Articles
Posted on: June 29, 2018

Managing the Risks of Tax Increment Financing

Tax increment financing (“TIF”) is a local economic development tool that can be an essential ingredient in making a development project happen. However, financing
a development project can expose a municipality and its taxpayers to significant . . .

Matthew Dregne, Stafford Rosenbaum LLP July 2018 Legal Articles
Posted on: June 29, 2018

Act 243 Constrains Municipal Development Authority

The Developers bill (2017 AB 770), so called because it was sought by
the Wisconsin REALTORS and the Wisconsin Builders Associations and limits municipal powers to regulate development and recover the cost of serving new development, was signed . . . .

Claire Silverman, the Municipality June 2018 Legal Articles
Posted on: June 29, 2018

The Latest Landlords Legislation--A Description of Act 317

The following description of municipally relevant provisions in Act 317, the Landlords' legislation, is lifted with minor changes from a memo prepared by Wisconsin Legislative Council Principal Attorney Scott Grosz. The League appreciates . . .

Curt Witynski in the Municipality June 2018 Legal Articles
Posted on: June 28, 2018

Board of Review

Each year, spring brings a mix of showers and sunshine. Much like the weather, property taxes provide a healthy foundation for funding local government services. To ensure the effectiveness of this process, fair and equitable taxation is essential.

Micheal Drea, April 2018 the Municipality Legal Articles
Posted on: June 28, 2018

Collecting Room Taxes from Airbnb and other Short-term Rentals

Despite recent changes made to the room tax law designed to help municipalities receive room taxes from short-term rental properties advertising on Airbnb and other online services, the reality is that little has changed in Wisconsin.

Curt Witynski, April 2018 the Municipality Legal Articles
Posted on: March 14, 2018

Municipal Regulation of "Click and Collect" Alcohol Sales

“Click and Collect” describes a practice where consumers order online from a retailer’s website and then pick up their orders at a local store. The use of Click and Collect . . .

Claire Silverman, the Municipality March 2018 Legal Articles
Posted on: February 27, 2018

Public Records Law Application to Individual Local Officials

Most public records requests are handled by municipal clerks, treasurers, administrators, or department heads, and involve records that are routinely created or kept by municipalities in the normal course of business.

Claire Silverman, the Municipality January 2018 Legal Articles
Posted on: March 1, 2018

Agenda Control and Presiding Officers

Although agendas are not required
by any state law, many governmental bodies, by custom or procedural rule, use them. They serve important practical purposes by providing a structure that facilitates efficient and effective use of meeting time . . . .

Daniel Olson December 2017 Legal Articles
Posted on: March 1, 2018

Items in the State Budget Affecting Municipalities

After nearly three months of legislative delay, Governor Walker signed the 2017-2018 state budget bill into law
as Act 59 on September 21. Like all state budgets, Act 59 is a mixed bag for municipalities, although positive changes slightly . . . .

Curt Witynski in the Municipality November 2017 Legal Articles
Posted on: March 1, 2018

When is a Street a Street?

When is a street a street? Although the question posed by this title may sound like a riddle or the lead-in to a joke, being unable to answer that question is no laughing matter when the outcome is important to those with a stake in the issue.

Claire Silverman, the Municipality November 2017 Legal Articles
Posted on: March 1, 2018

Is Your Website Accessible to People with Disabilities?

Local governments are increasingly finding that municipal websites are a cost-effective and efficient way to make information available to the public
24-7 without the direct assistance of government personnel. Not surprisingly . . . .

Claire Silverman, the Municipality October 2017 Legal Articles
Posted on: March 1, 2018

When are Committees "Governmental Bodies" Under the Open Meeting Law?

In State ex rel. Krueger v. Appleton Area School Dist. Bd. Of Educ., 2017 WI 70, the Wisconsin Supreme Court attempted to clarify when a committee constitutes a "governmental body" for purposes of the open meeting law after Krueger, a parent . . . .

Claire Silverman, the Municipality October 2017 Legal Articles
Posted on: March 1, 2018

Municipal Case Law Update (Part 2)

This is part 2 of a case law update summarizing cases decided within the last year that affect municipalities but not including U.S. Supreme Court decisions. Part 1 was published in the August issue of The Municipality.

Claire Silverman and Daniel Olson, Sept 2018 Legal Articles
Posted on: March 2, 2018

U.S. Supreme Court Decides Wisconsin Takings Case

The U.S. Supreme Court decided a major regulatory takings case last week, ending a Wisconsin land-use battle that lasted more than a dozen years. See Murr v. Wisconsin, No. 15-214 (U.S. June 23, 2017). It is not common for
a case to jump . . . .

Jeffrey A. Mandell, the Municipality August 2017 Legal Articles
Posted on: March 2, 2018

Municipal Case Law Update (Part 1)

This is Part 1 of a 2-part case law update summarizing Wisconsin appellate and 7th circuit decisions affecting Wisconsin municipalities.

Claire Silverman and Daniel Olson, Aug 2018 Legal Articles
Posted on: March 2, 2018

Court Rejects Substantial Zoning and Planning Law Changes

The City of Fitchburg (City) and the League of Wisconsin Municipalities
(League) recently won an important Wisconsin Supreme Court case for local government control over municipal zoning, planning, and development.

Daniel Olson, the Municipality July 2017 Legal Articles

News Flash

Posted on: June 5, 2018

Levies, assessments and equalized value: Unraveling the property tax knot in Wisconsin

What is equalized value, and why does it matter?

In the confounding system of property taxes, lower tax rates don’t always translate to lower bills.

If we paid taxes only to our city or town government — or some unified body — ...

Read on...

Additional Info... Levy Limits

News Flash

Posted on: May 16, 2019

Allouez board passes resolutions of support for state budget

The League of Wisconsin Municipalities is encouraging communities throughout the state to pass resolutions of support.

Additional Info... LWM in the News
Posted on: May 16, 2019

Foxconn Announces Final Round Winners of "Smart Cities-Smart Futures" Competition

In addition to the academic partners, the competition is also supported by several groups, including the League of Wisconsin Municipalities, the Wisconsin Technology Council, the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation, ...

Additional Info... LWM in the News
Posted on: April 25, 2019

Whitewater Common Council again elects Singer as president

...all of the state legislators representing the City of Whitewater, Governor Tony Evers and the League of Wisconsin Municipalities.

In summary, the council approved resolutions in support for shared revenue funding increases, increases in levy limit flexi...

Read on...

Additional Info... LWM in the News
Posted on: April 25, 2019

School, city elected officials mostly from East Side

"That's the beauty of local control," Witynski [Deputy Executive Director, the League] said. "Communities can design their forms of government and how they elect people and what they think is best for their community."

Additional Info... LWM in the News
Posted on: April 25, 2019

Manitowoc Art Forward: Museums making a difference throughout Wisconsin

The event, organized by Arts Wisconsin, the League of Wisconsin Municipalities and Wisconsin Federation of Museums, will be celebrating the contributions museums make to our state.

Additional Info... LWM in the News
Posted on: April 25, 2019

Village Board denies Walgreen’s excessive assessment claim

According to the League of Wisconsin Municipalities, attorneys for big box stores use the dark store loophole to argue that the value of a new store in a busy commercial district should be based on the value of former retail properties in unpopular areas ...

Read on...

Additional Info... LWM in the News
Posted on: April 25, 2019

No liquor license issued for Fox Lake Dollar General store

The Fox Lake City Council decided the city has enough liquor stores when it rejected an application from the new Dollar General store to sell booze beyond the beer it has already been approved for.

Additional Info... LWM in the News
Posted on: April 25, 2019

City of Clintonville offers full-time employees paid parental leave

A new policy in the updated personnel manual approved by Clintonville City Council at its March meeting puts the focus on growing families.

Additional Info... LWM in the News
Posted on: April 25, 2019

Civics Is Name Of The Game In New Wisconsin Competition

Former Madison Councilwoman Concerned About Participation In Government Created Wisconsin Civics Games

Additional Info... LWM in the News
Posted on: April 25, 2019

Local officials say county pressuring communities to take on roads — and their cost

“Brown, Eau Claire, Milwaukee, Waukesha and Racine counties do not require jurisdictional transfers,” said Jerry Deschane, executive director of the League of Wisconsin Municipalities, which lobbies on behalf of the state’s cities and villages.

Additional Info... LWM in the News
Posted on: April 25, 2019

High court upholds big property tax break for Lake Country home owner

Curt Witynski, deputy director of the League of Wisconsin Municipalities, said after the Court of Appeals ruling that the group warned about just such consequences when the Legislature first considered the ag classification about 12 years ago.  

Read on...

Additional Info... LWM in the News
Posted on: March 12, 2019

Can We Build Smarter Cities?

“When it come to smart cities, you can define it pretty much any way you want to,” said Jerry Deschane, who is executive director of the League of Wisconsin Municipalities, ...

Additional Info... LWM in the News
Posted on: March 12, 2019

What do cities and villages do?

“Cities were the first statutory creation, ...,” said Jerry Deschane, the executive director of the League of Wisconsin Municipalities said.

Additional Info... LWM in the News
Posted on: March 12, 2019

Murphy’s Law: Who will win the budget battle?

“All of the lobbyists and political observers in the Capitol are asking the same question and nobody knows how it will turn out,” ... Curt Witynski, Deputy Director:

Additional Info... LWM in the News
Posted on: February 28, 2019

GOP bill would create water pollution credit clearinghouse

Republican legislators began a push Tues. to streamline Wisconsin's water pollution credit-trading system, introducing a bill that would create a clearinghouse that they say would make it easier for large-scale facilities & farmers to trade...

Todd Richmond, Associated Presss LWM in the News
Posted on: February 11, 2019

Task force seeks solutions to transportation gridlock

Asked what Deschane had heard from municipal leaders about the issues, he said, “I think the word is ‘help’ with an exclamation point.”

With lack of funds in the transportation budget, the focus has been on state projects rather than local projects,..

Roberta Baumann, Waunakee Tribune LWM in the News
Posted on: January 30, 2019

Communities Continue To Rethink Sex Offender Residency Rules

Jenna Merten, Brookfield city attorney, said the change will protect the city from future lawsuits.

"If we didn't take this action, our ordinance would be unenforceable and sex offenders could live anywhere," Merten said.

Corri Hess, Wisconsin Public Radio LWM in the News
Posted on: January 17, 2019

Turner civics students prepare to compete in statewide games

BELOIT - Turner High School's civics team, proudly known as the Underdogs, are hoping to spank some of the competition from suburban schools they will compete against in the Wisconsin Newspaper Association's first Wisconsin Civics Games, set for Feb. 2.

Hillary Gavin, Beloit Daily News LWM in the News
Posted on: January 14, 2019

Sun Prairie named Wisconsin Active Together Community

Sun Prairie starts 2019 recognized as a Wisconsin Active Together Community to promote active lifestyles and for a pledge to foster health too.

The newly named Wisconsin Active Together Communities, now reaching 1.4 million Wisconsinites . . . .

Sun Prairie Star LWM in the News
Posted on: December 20, 2018

Future budgets loom for Ellsworth Area Ambulance Service

On Dec. 6, Ellsworth Area Ambulance Service Director Jessi Willenbring was working a 24-hour shift. Working extra or long hours have become frequent for Willenbring as the eight-municipality ambulance service has seen dwindling volunteers . . . .

David Clarey, River Towns Net LWM in the News
Posted on: December 19, 2018

Foxconn announces 1st-round winners in Smart Cities/Smart Futures Contest

Foxconn Technology Group has announced the selection of 88 first-round winners of the company’s Smart Cities—Smart Futures competition, an initiative that encourages the sharing of fresh ideas and unconventional thinking for the benefit of Wisconsin.

Michael Burke, The Journal Times LWM in the News
Posted on: December 14, 2018

Hartland Trustee Dick Landwehr, after serving for decades, decides he won't seek re-election

Longtime village trustee and Hartland public servant Dick Landwehr is not running for re-election after dedicating a lifetime of service to the village. Landwehr, 89, was first elected to the Hartland Village Board in 1962 and . . .

Jordyn Noennig, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel LWM in the News
Posted on: December 10, 2018

Is 'Asset Recycling' A Fix for Wisconsin Infrastructure Needs?

Partnerships between private entities and public institutions can foster developments that would otherwise never get off the ground. Take, for instance, the Pablo Center at the Confluence in Eau Claire — a $60 million, 142,000-square-foot arts . . .

Elizabeth Dohms, Wisconsin Public Radio News LWM in the News
Posted on: November 30, 2018

Wisconsin lawmakers won't settle debate on liquor licenses for barn wedding venues

Lawmakers seeking to provide clarity to a longstanding debate over whether owners of barns rented for weddings must obtain liquor licenses won't try to settle the question with legislation.

Molly Beck Milwaukee Journal Sentinel LWM in the News
Posted on: November 30, 2018

Fox conn's 'smart cities' competition drew 325 submissions from Wisconsin colleges

Foxconn Technology Group received 325 submissions from students, faculty and staff from Wisconsin colleges and universities for the first round of its “Smart Cities-Smart Futures” competition, according to a company announcement.

Kelly Meyerhofer for LaCrosse Tribune LWM in the News
Posted on: October 2, 2018

FCC Order on 5G Wireless Network Construction Concerns Some Wisconsin Cities

Local officials in Wisconsin say a Federal Communications Commission order aimed at helping build the next generation of high-speed, wireless internet is a giveaway to telecommunication companies that strips government of local control.

Rich Kremer Wisconsin Public Radio LWM in the News
Posted on: September 21, 2018

Walmart sues city over tax funds

MONROE — A well-known corporation has filed a lawsuit against the city to recover funds it claims the city took illegitimately through property taxes.

Bridget Cooke, Monroe Times LWM in the News
Posted on: September 21, 2018

La Crosse area officials: Dark store loophole unfair to homeowners

What’s known as the dark store loophole unfairly shifts the tax burden from big box stores to homeowners and small businesses La Crosse’s elected officials said Monday during a town hall event with the area’s state representatives.

Jourdan Vian, La Crosse Tribune LWM in the News
Posted on: September 4, 2018

New Sauk County Attorney has been 'effective advocate' for local governments

As assistant counsel with the League of Wisconsin Municipalities, Daniel Olson spent his days providing guidance to local government attorneys. From his office in Madison, Olson took anywhere from 1,000 to 1,500 phone calls each year . . . .

Tim Damos, Baraboo News Republic LWM in the News
Posted on: August 14, 2018

Development in cities, villages hit $5.6 billion in 2016, report shows

Development in Wisconsin’s 600 cities and villages hit $5.6 billion in 2016, marking the largest increase since the Great Recession, according to a recent report from the League of Wisconsin Municipalities. But the benefits of economic development . . .

WisBusiness.Com LWM in the News
Posted on: July 30, 2018

Dary: Investment in the arts boosts state's economy

There are some truly amazing things going on in Wisconsin! There’s exciting growth in community engagement, reimagining of public spaces and our creative economy programs are stronger than ever. Wisconsin is poised to become a cultural magnet . . . .

Beth Dary Special to The Kenosha News, 7/26/28 LWM in the News
Posted on: July 23, 2018

Sturgeon Bay Wal-Mart gets reassessed in dark store case

The city of Sturgeon Bay and Wal-Mart will head to mediation this fall to discuss the store’s current property assessment. Last September, the Wal-Mart Real Estate Business Trust filed a suit against the city in Door County Circuit Court . . . .

Tim Kowols, Door County News, July 20, 2018 LWM in the News
Posted on: July 10, 2018

Our Views: Times to End Disparity in Act 10

A June 27 ruling by the U.S. Supreme Court helped bring Wisconsin police and firefighter unions closer to parity with the state’s other public-sector unions, but a major disparity remains—they still can collectively bargain.

GazetteXtra July 9, 2018 LWM in the News
Posted on: July 10, 2018

Regional Arts Activity Highlighted at Rural Arts Forum

“Your stories are so inspiring.” commented MaryAnn Lippert after listening to reports about arts activity from eight northwest Wisconsin communities. Lippert is the director for the northern region of the Wisconsin Department of Administration.

Harriet Rice, Burnett County Sentinel LWM in the News
Posted on: July 10, 2018

State law change affects Lac La Belle

A state zoning law that some Town of Oconomowoc residents had hoped to use to block construction of a corporate headquarters adjacent to the Lac La Belle golf course has been repealed by the state Legislature. “That section was repealed by . . . .

Kelly Smith--Special to the Freeman LWM in the News
Posted on: July 10, 2018

Report sketches positive portrait of Wisconsin's 'creative' industry

Some want to grow Wisconsin’s economy by attracting companies that manufacture LCD panels or mine for frac sand, but a new report emphasizes the economic boost that comes from growing the “creative sector.” Arts Wisconsin--in partnership with the League

Lisa Neff, Wisconsin Gazette.com LWM in the News
Posted on: June 29, 2018

Thiesfeldt Recognized by League of Wisconsin Municipalities

The League of Wisconsin Municipalities presented Representative Jeremy Thiesfeldt with their Champion award at the Fond du Lac City Council this week. Thiesfeldt was recognized for his support of local municipal control on the state level . . .

News-Talk KFIZ am 1450 June 28, 2018 LWM in the News
Posted on: May 18, 2018

A Growing Arts Economy Highlights Creative Economy Week

While the arts are fun and creative, a state arts leader says the arts are also a growing component of an areas economy.

The League of Wisconsin Municipalities and Arts Wisconsin are partnering to make this Creative Economy Week. . . .

Ken Krall, WXPR Radio May 16, 2018 LWM in the News
Posted on: May 14, 2018

Baraboo graces cover of statewide magazine

Baraboo currently graces a magazine cover as the model of an arts-friendly community. The May issue of The Municipality, published by the League of Wisconsin Municipalities, features a photo of the Baraboo High School band performing during the . . . .

Ben Bromley Baraboo News Republic LWM in the News
Posted on: May 11, 2018

Loss of Local Control a Hot Topic at Meeting

Damage in delivery of essential services by local government due to federal and state erosion of local control was the topic of discussion for about 50 participants at the American Legion Taphouse 138 in Viroqua on Tuesday, April 24.

Gillian Pomplun, Crawford County Independent LWM in the News
Posted on: April 25, 2018

Growing Concern Over Dark Store Loophole

The “dark store” controversy now ranks with the failure to pay for long-term highway construction as the most difficult issues facing the governor and legislators seeking reelection in November.

Steven Walters for Urban Milwaukee April 23, 2018 LWM in the News
Posted on: April 6, 2018

Democratic legislators committed to closing ‘dark store loophole’

State Rep. Jimmy Anderson and other Democratic legislators are assuring Dane County Board members and other local officials of their commitment to legislation that would close the “dark store loophole” used by big box retailers to lower their tax. . .

The Herald Independent April 4, 2018 LWM in the News
Posted on: March 16, 2018

Bill would save municipalities money

A bill co-authored by 25th Dist. State Sen. Janet Bewley, D-Ashland, would allow municipal officials to serve as election officials. The bill has passed both houses of the Legislature and awaits Gov. Scott Walker’s signature.

Bob Zientara, Barron News-Shield LWM in the News
Posted on: March 8, 2018

Homeowner's tax assessment will drop $800000 after court deems backyard trees agriculture

Plant the right kinds of trees in your backyard and you could save oodles on your property tax bill, after the state Court of Appeals ruled Wednesday in favor of a Town of Delafield resident.

Bruce Vielmetti, Wisconsin Journal Sentinel LWM in the News
Posted on: February 22, 2018

Is a Last-Minute Bill to Help Developers that’s Being Jammed through the Legislature Going to Create

At first glance, Wisconsin State Assembly Bill 770 (AB 770) looks to be a standard piece of Republican-sponsored legislation meant to clear away regulations on new housing projects. The legislation reads almost like a developer’s wish list.

Dan Shaw, Shepherd Express LWM in the News
Posted on: February 22, 2018

WalMart Wants Tax Refund Due to "Dark Store Theory"

Wal-mart is contesting the property assessment of its Minocqua store, contending the property is worth much less and thus it’s due a refund of thousands of dollars it paid in property taxes.

Dean S. Acheson, WXPR Radio LWM in the News
Posted on: February 19, 2018

City takes on 'dark store' tax strategy

MENOMONIE — The City Council may take action Monday on a resolution that would ask the state Legislature to act on ending “dark store” strategies in the city and state.

As defined by the League of Wisconsin Municipalities, “dark store theory” is . . . .

Ben Rueter Leader-Telegram LWM in the News
Posted on: February 6, 2018

Green Bay Looks to Hire Someone to Address Rat Problem

Workers with the City of Green Bay are hearing a lot of complaints about rats on the west side of town. Another hire is needed to address the growing rodent problem, says Bill Paape, the city's neighborhood development manager. . . .

Patty Murray, Wisconsin Public Radio LWM in the News
Posted on: February 6, 2018

Sauk City begins wheel tax discussions

Communities across Wisconsin have been struggling to fund much needed infrastructure repair as state lawmakers allocate less and less of the state budget for roads, according to the state DOT. This has led many small communities to . . . .

Autumn Luedke, Sauk City Eagle LWM in the News
Posted on: January 24, 2018

Domestic abuse advocates concerned bill favors landlord rights over those of tenants

As a new landlord-tenant bill aimed at decreasing costs for landlords makes its way through the Wisconsin Legislature, advocates for domestic abuse victims are concerned with many of the bill’s provisions.

Haley Cleghorn, The Badger Herald LWM in the News
Posted on: January 17, 2018

Legislation to Allow Municipal Officials to Serve as Election Officials Passes State Assembley

Today, the State Assembly passed Assembly Bill 85, authored by Representative Lisa Subeck (D-Madison), Representative Ed Brooks (R- Reedsburg), and Senator Janet Bewley (D-Ashland), to allow municipal officials to serve as election officials.

State Rep. Lisa Subeck Urban Milwaukee LWM in the News
Posted on: January 11, 2018

Wisconsin Mulls Limiting Pro-Worker Local Ordinances

Business and labor clashed Wednesday over a Republican bill that would prevent local governments in Wisconsin from enacting a variety of ordinances pertaining to employment matters, including limits on working hours, overtime, benefits, and . . .

Scott Bauer, Beloit Daily News LWM in the News
Posted on: January 8, 2018

Portage Historic Preservation panel faces participation challenges

Erin Foley says she’s history. Doug Klapper, chairman of the city of Portage’s Historic Preservation Commission, says he’ll believe it when he sees a resignation letter from Foley, who says she’s been on the commission since 2008.

Lyn Jerde, Portage Daily Register LWM in the News
Posted on: January 2, 2018

Top 10: State law signed on eminent domain proceedings

It’s been a long fight for Bay City resident David Meixner, and he is tired. But he refuses to give up in the battle to save what he says is his land from eminent domain proceedings.

Sarah Nigbor, Pierce County Herald LWM in the News
Posted on: December 15, 2017

Dark store 'loophole' could be on the way out in Wisconsin

A Wisconsin tax loophole exploited by big box stores could soon be closed if two newly introduced bills get passed into law. Senate Bills 291 and 292 would change the way properties are assessed to prevent businesses from being assessed . . . .

Dominic Lynch, Watchdog.org LWM in the News
Posted on: December 15, 2017

Republican Lawmakers favor Municipal Power Restriction

If the Republican lawmakers of Wisconsin have their way, municipalities in the state could lose all their regulatory power, like the ability to conduct systematic building inspections. These possible new bills are being sponsored by. . .

Danny Abramov, Financial Buzz LWM in the News
Posted on: December 15, 2017

Wisconsin roundup: Group says proposed change would protect bad landlords

The League of Wisconsin Municipalities opposes plans by Republican state lawmakers to limit the regulatory powers of city governments. The Senate Committee on Insurance, Housing and Trade held a hearing at the Capitol Wednesday. The change would end. . .

River Falls Journal LWM in the News
Posted on: December 15, 2017

Senate committee hears testimony on GOP bills that would change tenant-landlord relationship, limit

While sponsors of Republican legislation argue it would promote affordable housing and create a fair rental housing market, others say it would tilt power more toward landlords and limit municipal powers.

Abigal Becker, The Cap Times LWM in the News
Posted on: December 15, 2017

Wisconsin 'dark store' cases threaten to hike your property taxes

Appleton Post-Crescent -- Large chain-store retailers are trying to cut their property assessments by more than $700 million across Wisconsin — potentially forcing other taxpayers to pay more to fund local public services, a USA TODAY NETWORK-Wisconsin...

Madeleine Behr, Doug Schneider and Haley BeMiller LWM in the News
Posted on: December 13, 2017

Dark Store Day Shines Light on Corporate Loophole

Local municipal leaders supported by the Wisconsin League of Municipalities urged people to contact their state representatives on Monday, Dec. 11, Dark Store Day.
Dark Store Day was formed from a growing concern . . . .

Ben Rogers, The Press LWM in the News
Posted on: December 13, 2017

City leaders gather in Ashwaubenon for "dark store day"

Mayors and village presidents from Brown County and the Fox Valley gathered for "Dark Store Day," a day created to raise awareness to the dark store loophole.
It's a tax avoidance strategy by commercial retailers such as Menards, Walgreens, and CVS . . .

Jordan Lamers, Wearegreenbay.com LWM in the News
Posted on: December 13, 2017

In Ashwaubenon, cities and villages demand legislature close dark-stores loophole

Local leaders from Oshkosh to Howard gathered in Brown County on Monday to demand state lawmakers change a law that they say shifts property tax burdens from chain retailers to homeowners and small businesses.

Doug Schneider USA TODAY NETWORK Green Bay Gazette LWM in the News
Posted on: December 13, 2017

Dark Store Day: 19 mayors speak out against tax loophole that allows some big box retailers to pay l

Nineteen city and village mayors, including Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett on Monday, December 11th spoke out against so-called "dark store" practices. The mayors called it a tax loophole that allows big box retailers to pay millions less in taxes . . . .

Jonathon Gregg, Fox 6 LWM in the News
Posted on: December 13, 2017

Village Board reschedules vote on Foxconn bills

It may be a case of semantics, but the Village of Mount Pleasant is playing it safe when it comes to paying the bills related to the Foxconn Technology Group development project. On Dec. 4, the village’s Finance/Legal/License Committee recommended . . .

Ricardo Torres, The Journal Times LWM in the News
Posted on: December 13, 2017

State GOP lawmakers seek to limit municipal powers

State Republican lawmakers want to further limit the regulatory powers of Madison and other municipalities, including the ability to do systematic building inspections.
Two bills sponsored by Sen. Frank Lasee, R-DePere, and Rep. Rob Brooks . . . .

Dean Mosiman, Wisconsin State Journal LWM in the News
Posted on: December 11, 2017

Eau Claire lawsuit over development subsidies takes on statewide impact, draws in Milwaukee, Foxconn

A lawsuit pending before the Wisconsin Supreme Court involves a project in downtown Eau Claire, and its outcome will either reinforce or wipe out local governments’ main tool for financing large developments, including Foxconn Technology Group’s plant.

Sean Ryan, Milwaukee Business Journal LWM in the News
Posted on: December 11, 2017

In stagnant Wisconsin communities, rising public service costs could be problematic

Wisconsin municipalities know all too well what it means to do more with less, and they have for about the last decade. It all has to do with property tax levy limits.

Emilie Heidemann, Lodi Enterprise LWM in the News

News Flash

News Flash

News Flash

News Flash

News Flash

Posted on: August 9, 2018

Roundy's sues Shorewood over 'excessive' Metro Market assessment

Roundy's has filed a lawsuit against the village, claiming the assessed value of the Metro Market is "excessive." The village has assessed the two-story grocery store at $25.3 million, but the complaint filed by Roundy's claims the grocery store . . . .

Jeff Rumage, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel 8-8-18 Walgreens Decision