Date Set for Waterfront Declaratory Meeting in Sturgeon Bay

A date has been set for a declaratory meeting involving the Department of Natural Resources and litigants involved in the impasse over two parcels on Sturgeon Bay’s west side waterfront. The DNR says the meeting is Wednesday, September 6th, from 3 to 7PM, in the Jane Greene Room at the Door County Library. Out of that meeting, the state agency is expected to make a determination as to where the ordinary high water mark should be located. The ordinary high water mark essentially sets the boundary between what is considered public and what is considered private land. When a friends group sued the city and its Waterfront Redevelopment Authority, it contended that, because a portion of the land had been filled in over the years, it was public property, based on the state constitution’s public trust doctrine, and could not be sold to a developer. The judge who heard the case ruled that the land could not be sold until the ordinary high water mark was determined. Shortly after the decision, the friends group petitioned for a declaratory hearing and the particulars of session were agreed upon by all of the parties last week. Earlier, an attempt by an ad hoc committee to settle the lawsuit was rebuffed when the Waterfront Redevelopment Authority voted to reject the proposed agreement on a five to two vote.

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