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236.015 236.015 Applicability of chapter. This chapter does not apply to transportation project plats that conform to s. 84.095.
236.015 History History: 1997 a. 282.
236.02 236.02 Definitions. In this chapter, unless the context or subject matter clearly requires otherwise:
236.02(1) (1)“Alley" means a public or private right-of-way shown on a plat, which provides secondary access to a lot, block or parcel of land.
236.02(2) (2)“Copy" means a true and accurate copy of all sheets of the original subdivision plat. Such copy shall be on durable white matte finished paper with legible dark lines and lettering.
236.02(2m) (2m)“Correction instrument" means an instrument drafted by a professional land surveyor that complies with the requirements of s. 236.295 and that, upon recording, corrects a subdivision plat or a certified survey map.
236.02(3) (3)“County planning agency" means a rural county planning agency authorized by s. 27.019, a county park commission authorized by s. 27.02 except that in a county with a county executive or county administrator, the county park manager appointed under s. 27.03 (2), a county zoning agency authorized by s. 59.69 or any agency created by the county board and authorized by statute to plan land use.
236.02(4) (4)“Department" means the department of administration.
236.02(5) (5)“Extraterritorial plat approval jurisdiction" means the unincorporated area within 3 miles of the corporate limits of a first, second or third class city, or 1 1/2 miles of a fourth class city or a village.
236.02(6) (6)“Municipality" means an incorporated city or village.
236.02(7) (7)An “outlot" is a parcel of land, other than a lot or block, so designated on the plat.
236.02(8) (8)“Plat" is a map of a subdivision.
236.02(9) (9)“Preliminary plat" is a map showing the salient features of a proposed subdivision submitted to an approving authority for purposes of preliminary consideration.
236.02(9b) (9b)“Professional land surveyor" means a professional land surveyor licensed under ch. 443.
236.02(9c) (9c)“Record" means, with respect to a final plat or a certified survey map, to record and file the document with the register of deeds.
236.02(9m) (9m)“Recorded private claim" means a claim of title to land based on a conveyance from a foreign government made before the land was acquired by the United States.
236.02(11) (11)“Replat" is the process of changing, or the map or plat which changes, the boundaries of a recorded subdivision plat or part thereof. The legal dividing of a large block, lot or outlot within a recorded subdivision plat without changing exterior boundaries of said block, lot or outlot is not a replat.
236.02(12) (12)
236.02(12)(am)(am) Except as provided in par. (bm), “subdivision" means a division of a lot, parcel, or tract of land by the owner thereof or the owner's agent for the purpose of sale or of building development and to which any of the following applies:
236.02(12)(am)1. 1. The act of division creates 5 or more parcels or building sites of 1 1/2 acres each or less in area.
236.02(12)(am)2. 2. Five or more parcels or building sites of 1 1/2 acres each or less in area are created by successive divisions within a period of 5 years.
236.02(12)(bm) (bm) “Subdivision" does not include a division of land into 5 or more parcels or building sites by a certified survey map in accordance with an ordinance enacted or a resolution adopted under s. 236.34 (1) (ar) 1.
236.02(13) (13)“Town planning agency" means a town zoning committee appointed under s. 60.61 (4) (a) or any agency created by the town board and authorized by statute to plan land use.
236.02 Annotation Chapter 236 does not authorize the transportation department to regulate land divisions that are not subdivisions within the meaning of s. 236.02 (12). Wisconsin Builders Association v. DOT, 2005 WI App 160, 285 Wis. 2d 472, 702 N.W.2d 433, 04-2388.
236.02 Annotation Sub. (12) was not applicable to determining whether a condominium parcel met the minimum lakeshore frontage requirement of a zoning ordinance as: 1) a declaration of condominium is not a subdivision of land as defined in ch. 236; and 2) even if ch. 236 were used by analogy the determination of lot sizes under sub. (12) refers to lot area and not lot width or lakeshore frontage. A subdivision under ch. 236 requires a division of land. A condominium declaration changes the form of ownership and is not a division of land. FAS, LLC v. Town of Bass Lake, 2007 WI 73, 301 Wis. 2d 321, 733 N.W.2d 287, 05-1689. See also s. 710.09.
236.02 Annotation In determining lot sizes under sub. (8), [now sub. (12)], the lots may not extend across navigable waters or public easements of passage, nor include any land whose servitude is inconsistent with its integrated functional use and unified ownership. 66 Atty. Gen. 2. But see FAS, LLC v. Town of Bass Lake, 2007 WI 73, 301 Wis. 2d 321, 733 N.W.2d 287, 05-1689.
236.02 Annotation Chapter 236 does not require a replat when the division of a lot or redivision of more than one lot does not meet the definition of a “subdivision" under this section. 67 Atty. Gen. 121.
236.02 Annotation Certified survey maps under s. 236.34 cannot substitute for subdivision surveys under sub. (8), [now sub. (12)]. Penalties under s. 236.31 apply to improper use of certified surveys. 67 Atty. Gen. 294.
236.025 236.025 Ordinary high water marks.
236.025(1)(1)For purposes of ss. 236.15 (1) (ag) and (d) and 236.20 (2) (g), a professional land surveyor may do any of the following:
236.025(1)(a) (a) Incorporate into a map, plat, or survey an ordinary high water mark that has been determined by the department of natural resources or otherwise determined pursuant to law.
236.025(1)(b) (b) Approximate the ordinary high water mark and incorporate that mark into a map, plat, or survey.
236.025(2) (2)For purposes of sub. (1) (b), the location of the approximate ordinary high water mark shall be the point on the bank of a navigable stream or on the shore of a lake up to which the presence and action of surface water is so continuous as to leave a distinctive mark by erosion, destruction of terrestrial vegetation, or other easily recognized characteristics. If the approximate location of the ordinary high water mark is difficult to determine, a professional land surveyor may consider other points on the bank or shore for purposes of approximating the location of the ordinary high water mark.
236.025(3) (3)For purposes of this section, a map, plat, or survey that shows an approximate ordinary high water mark shall state on its face that the mark is shown for reference only.
236.025 History History: 2013 a. 358.
236.03 236.03 Survey and plat; when required.
236.03(1)(1)Any division of land that results in a subdivision as defined in s. 236.02 (12) (am) 1. shall be, and any other division may be, surveyed and a plat thereof approved and recorded as required by this chapter. No map or survey purporting to create divisions of land or intending to clarify metes and bounds descriptions may be recorded except as provided by this chapter.
236.03(2) (2)This chapter does not apply to cemetery plats made under s. 157.07 and assessors' plats made under s. 70.27, but such assessors' plats shall, except in counties having a population of 750,000 or more, comply with ss. 236.15 (1) (ac) to (g) and 236.20 (1) and (2) (a) to (e), unless waived under s. 236.20 (2) (L).
236.03(3) (3)Subsection (1) shall not apply to the sale or exchange of parcels of public utility or railroad right-of-way to adjoining property owners if the governing body of the municipality or town in which the property is located and the county planning agency, where such agency exists, approves such sale or exchange on the basis of applicable local ordinances or the provisions of this chapter.
236.03 Annotation The provisions of s. 236.41 relating to vacation of streets are inapplicable to assessors plats under s. 70.27. Once properly filed and recorded, an assessor's plat becomes the operative document of record, and only sections specified in s. 236.03 (2) apply to assessor's plats. Schaetz v. Town of Scott, 222 Wis. 2d 90, 585 N.W.2d 889 (Ct. App. 1998), 98-0841.
236.03 Annotation A replat of a recorded subdivision must comply with the formal platting requirements of ch. 236 relating to new subdivision plats, including those relating to the survey, approval, and recording. 63 Atty. Gen. 193.
subch. II of ch. 236 SUBCHAPTER II
APPROVAL OF PLAT
236.10 236.10 Approvals necessary.
236.10(1)(1)To entitle a final plat of a subdivision to be recorded, it shall have the approval of the following in accordance with the provisions of s. 236.12:
236.10(1)(a) (a) If within a municipality, the governing body, but if the plat is within an area, the annexation of which is being legally contested, the governing bodies of both the annexing municipality and the town from which the area has been annexed shall approve.
236.10(1)(b) (b) If within the extraterritorial plat approval jurisdiction of a municipality:
236.10(1)(b)1. 1. The town board; and
236.10(1)(b)2. 2. The governing body of the municipality if, by July 1, 1958, or thereafter it adopts a subdivision ordinance or an official map under s. 62.23; and
236.10(1)(b)3. 3. Subject to sub. (1m), the county planning agency if such agency employs on a full-time basis a professional engineer, a planner or other person charged with the duty of administering zoning or other planning legislation.
236.10(1)(c) (c) If outside the extraterritorial plat approval jurisdiction of a municipality:
236.10(1)(c)1. 1. The town board; and
236.10(1)(c)2. 2. Subject to sub. (1m), the county planning agency, if there is one.
236.10(1m) (1m)
236.10(1m)(a)(a) Except as provided in par. (b), a county planning agency under sub. (1) (b) 3. or (c) 2. has no authority to approve or object to the preliminary or final plat of a subdivision that is located in a town that has, before the preliminary plat is submitted for approval, or before the final plat is submitted for approval if no preliminary plat is submitted, enacted an ordinance under s. 60.23 (34) withdrawing the town from county zoning and the county development plan.
236.10(1m)(b) (b) A county planning agency under sub. (1) (b) 3. or (c) 2. may object to any of the following portions of a subdivision that is located in a town described in par. (a):
236.10(1m)(b)1. 1. Any portion of the subdivision that is shoreland, as defined in s. 59.692 (1) (b), in the county.
236.10(1m)(b)2. 2. Any portion of the subdivision that is in a 100-year floodplain in the county.
236.10(2) (2)If a subdivision lies within the extraterritorial plat approval jurisdiction of more than one municipality, the provisions of s. 66.0105 shall apply.
236.10(3) (3)The authority to approve or object to preliminary or final plats under this chapter may be delegated to a planning committee or commission of the approving governing body. Final plats dedicating streets, highways or other lands shall be approved by the governing body of the town or municipality in which such are located.
236.10(4) (4)Any municipality, town or county may under s. 66.0301 agree with any other municipality, town or county for the cooperative exercise of the authority to approve or review plats. A municipality, town or county may, under s. 66.0301, agree to have a regional planning commission review plats and submit an advisory recommendation with respect to their approval. A municipality, town or county may agree with a regional planning commission for the cooperative exercise of the authority to approve or review plats only as provided under s. 66.0309 (11).
236.10(5) (5)Any municipality may waive its right to approve plats within any portion of its extraterritorial plat approval jurisdiction by a resolution of the governing body recorded with the register of deeds incorporating a map or metes and bounds description of the area outside its corporate boundaries within which it shall approve plats. The municipality may rescind this waiver at any time by resolution of the governing body recorded with the register of deeds.
236.10 History History: 1979 c. 248; 1993 a. 301; 1999 a. 150 s. 672; 2015 a. 178.
236.10 Annotation A city improperly included lots not within its extraterritorial plat approval jurisdiction in the city's calculation of fees assessed to a developer. Brookhill Development, Ltd. v. City of Waukesha, 103 Wis. 2d 27, 307 N.W.2d 242 (1981).
236.10 Annotation Section 236.12 (2) (a) does not restrict a town's authority to impose public improvements as conditions for plat approval during a contested annexation. When a town is legally contesting the annexation, sub. (1) (a) requires both the annexing municipality and the town from which the area has been annexed to approve a final plat in accordance with s. 236.12. KW Holdings, LLC v. Town of Windsor, 2003 WI App 9, 259 Wis. 2d 357, 656 N.W.2d 752, 02-0706.
236.10 Annotation Artificial lakes and land subdivisions. Kusler, 1971 WLR 369.
236.11 236.11 Submission of plats for approval.
236.11(1)(1)
236.11(1)(a) (a) Before submitting a final plat for approval, the subdivider may submit, or the approving authority may require that the subdivider submit, a preliminary plat. It shall be clearly marked “preliminary plat" and shall be in sufficient detail to determine whether the final plat will meet layout requirements. Within 90 days the approving authority, or its agent authorized to approve preliminary plats, shall take action to approve, approve conditionally, or reject the preliminary plat and shall state in writing any conditions of approval or reasons for rejection, unless the time is extended by agreement with the subdivider. Failure of the approving authority or its agent to act within the 90 days, or extension thereof, constitutes an approval of the preliminary plat.
236.11(1)(b) (b) If the final plat conforms substantially to the preliminary plat as approved, including any conditions of that approval, and to local plans and ordinances adopted as authorized by law, it is entitled to approval. If the final plat is not submitted within 36 months after the last required approval of the preliminary plat, any approving authority may refuse to approve the final plat or may extend the time for submission of the final plat. The final plat may, if permitted by the approving authority, constitute only that portion of the approved preliminary plat that the subdivider proposes to record at that time.
236.11(1)(c) (c) A professional engineer, a planner, or another person charged with the responsibility to review plats shall provide the approving authority with his or her conclusions as to whether the final plat conforms substantially to the preliminary plat and with his or her recommendation on approval of the final plat. The conclusions and recommendation shall be made a part of the record of the proceeding at which the final plat is being considered and are not required to be submitted in writing.
236.11(2) (2)
236.11(2)(a)(a) The subdivider or subdivider's agent shall submit to the body or bodies having authority to approve plats an electronic copy of the final plat or a copy of the final plat that is capable of legible reproduction. The approving authority or authorities shall approve or reject the final plat within 60 days of its submission, unless the time is extended by agreement with the subdivider or subdivider's agent. When the approving authority is a municipality and determines to approve the plat, it shall give at least 10 days' prior written notice of its intention to the clerk of any municipality whose boundaries are within 1,000 feet of any portion of such proposed plat but failure to give such notice shall not invalidate any such plat. If a plat is rejected, the reasons therefor shall be stated in the minutes of the meeting and a copy thereof or a written statement of the reasons shall be supplied to the subdivider or subdivider's agent. If the approving authority fails to act within 60 days and the time has not been extended by agreement and if no unsatisfied objections have been filed within that period, the plat shall be deemed approved, and, upon demand, a certificate to that effect shall be made on the face of the plat by the clerk of the authority that has failed to act.
236.11(2)(b) (b) The approval of the approving authority or authorities may be based on the copy submitted under par. (a) but the approval must be inscribed on the recordable plat document. Before inscribing its approval, the approving authority shall require the subdivider or subdivider's agent to certify the respects in which the recordable plat document differs from the copy, if any. An approving authority must approve all modifications in the final plat before it gives final approval to the plat. No approving authority may inscribe its final approval on a plat before the affixing of the certificate by the department under s. 236.12 (3).
236.11 History History: 1979 c. 248; 1997 a. 332; 2009 a. 376; 2013 a. 358.
236.11 Annotation Under s. 236.11 (1) (a), a village must act within the stated time limit as to a preliminary plat, even though the plat allegedly violates the official city map. Tabling consideration of the plat within the stated time is not sufficient. State ex rel. Lozoff v. Board of Trustees of Hartland, 55 Wis. 2d 64, 197 N.W.2d 798 (1972).
236.12 236.12 Procedure for approval of plats.
236.12(1)(1)This section shall not apply to cities of the first class nor to unincorporated land in a county having a population of 750,000 or more.
236.12(2) (2)
236.12(2)(ac)(ac) The subdivider or subdivider's agent shall submit an electronic copy of the preliminary or final plat, or a copy of the preliminary or final plat that is capable of clearly legible reproduction, to the department, which shall examine the plat for compliance with ss. 236.15, 236.16, 236.20, and 236.21 (1) and (2).
236.12(2)(ap) (ap) Within 2 days after a preliminary or final plat is submitted under par. (ac), the department shall transmit an electronic copy of the plat, or, if the department prefers, 2 legible hard copies of the plat, to each state agency authorized to object to the plat under this paragraph. If the subdivision abuts or adjoins a state trunk highway or connecting highway, the department shall transmit a copy or copies of the plat to the department of transportation so that the agency may determine whether it has any objection to the plat on the basis of its rules as provided in s. 236.13. If the subdivision is not served by a public sewer and provision for that service has not been made, the department shall transmit a copy or copies of the plat to the department of safety and professional services so that the agency may determine whether it has any objection to the plat on the basis of its rules as provided in s. 236.13. In lieu of this procedure the agencies may designate local officials to act as their agents in examining the plats for compliance with the statutes or their rules by filing a written delegation of authority with the approving body.
236.12(2)(b) (b) Within 2 days after a preliminary or final plat is submitted under par. (ac), the department shall transmit an electronic copy of the plat, or, if the department prefers, 4 legible hard copies of the plat, to the county planning agency, if the agency employs on a full-time basis a professional engineer, a planner, or other person charged with the duty of administering planning legislation and adopts a policy requiring submission so that the body may determine if it has any objection to the plat on the basis of a conflict with park, parkway, expressway, major highways, airports, drainage channels, schools, or other planned public developments. If no county planning agency exists, then 2 copies to the county park commission except that in a county with a county executive or county administrator, 2 copies to the county park manager, if the subdivision abuts a county park or parkway so that the body may determine if it has any objection to the plat on the basis of a conflict with the park or parkway development.
236.12(3) (3)Within 20 days after the date of receiving the copies of the plat any agency having authority to object under sub. (2) shall notify the subdivider or subdivider's agent and all other agencies having the authority to object of any objection based upon failure of the plat to comply with the statutes or rules that its examination under sub. (2) is authorized to cover, or, if there is no objection, it shall so certify on the face of a copy of the plat and return that copy to the department. After each agency and the department have certified that they have no objection or that their objections have been satisfied, the department shall so certify on the face of the plat. If an agency fails to act within 20 days from the date on which it received the copy or copies of the plat, and the department fails to act within 30 days from the date on which it received the copy of the plat, it shall be deemed that there are no objections to the plat and, upon demand, the department shall so certify on the face of the plat.
236.12(4m) (4m)In order to facilitate approval of the final plat whenever more than one approval is required, the subdivider or subdivider's agent shall file with each approving authority a true copy of the plat that the subdivider or subdivider's agent submitted to the department.
236.12(7) (7)The department and the state agencies referred to in s. 236.13 (1) may charge reasonable service fees for all or part of the costs of activities and services provided by the department under this section and s. 70.27. A schedule of such fees shall be established by rule by each such agency.
236.12 Annotation A “planned public development" under sub. (2) (b) is one that a county board has adopted by ordinance. Reynolds v. Waukesha County Park & Planning Commission, 109 Wis. 2d 56, 324 N.W.2d 897 (Ct. App. 1982).
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2017-18 Wisconsin Statutes updated through 2019 Wis. Act 186 and through all Supreme Court and Controlled Substances Board Orders filed before and in effect on September 1, 2020. Published and certified under s. 35.18. Changes effective after September 1, 2020, are designated by NOTES. (Published 9-1-20)