It looks like the Senate Environmental Committee is considering adding a new requirement for property owners throughout the state. It's about shoreland zoning.
Under current law, a county must enact a shoreland zoning ordinance for shorelands in its unincorporated area. Current law defines a shoreland as an area within a certain distance from the edge of a navigable water.
To make a long story short, if you own a property that comes within the designated area, you are required to present a "mitigation" plan, which means you will install something that will counter the negative effect your property has on the water. For instance, you might install a rain garden, which will halt surface runoff into the nearby water.
A bill sponsored by Madison's Rep. Spencer Black and Sen. Jim Holperin (D-Conover), will require that property owners selling their land disclose the required mitigation plans to prospective buyers. The logic is that buyers should know what kind of trouble they're getting into before they invest in a property.
Greg Hull, a real estate agent and candidate for the district 4 seat on the Dane County Board, talked about this issue with me a couple weeks ago. According to him, "navigable water" could include anything from Lake Mendota to retention ponds. He said 75 percent of Dane County falls under the restriction because the definition of "navigable water" is so loose. Read the full interview here, at the old site.
I hope to discuss the issue with Hull and his incumbent opponent, Sup. Brett Hulsey, at Logan's, where all Dane County Board candidates will have a chance to introduce themselves. 5-7 p.m. tomorrow, at Logan's Bar and Grill on West Johnson!