Onalaska Committee Mulls Over Badger Coulee Line, Urban Agricult - WXOW News 19 La Crosse, WI – News, Weather and Sports |

Onalaska Committee Mulls Over Badger Coulee Line, Urban Agriculture

Onalaska Committee Mulls Over Badger Coulee Line, Urban Agriculture

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Onalaska, WI (WXOW) - Onalaska's Plan Commission Sub-Committee met tonight to talk about the Badger Coulee Line and urban agriculture.

The city says they have major concerns about the southern route for the Badger Coulee Transmission Line.  While the American Transmission Company says the line will address reliability issues and save money for Wisconsin residents, Land Use & Development Director Brea Grace said that the city had concerns over decline in sales prices of property near the line, the possible difficulty residents might have selling homes near the line, and aesthetic issues.  The city of Onalaska will accept public comments on the environmental impact statement through October 3rd.  Grace said, "The public is invited to write about what their concerns are, what the potential impacts they see are."  The city also held a meeting last week at Onalaska High School about the issue, with about 80 people attending.

The sub-committee also discussed possible ordinances that would allow certain types of urban agriculture in residential areas, like the keeping of chickens, rabbits, and bees.  The city is planning on surveying the public to see if the idea is acceptable to residents.  While the Plan Commission was planning to release the survey earlier this summer, Grace said, "We just took a month break in the process...We needed a little more time to research the urban agriculture issues we're looking at."  The Plan Commission will review a draft of the survey next week and decide if it is ready to be given to the public.  The survey will ask residents about their feelings on keeping chickens, bees, rabbits, composting, and natural lawns in residential areas.

Grace said, "We're just looking for city sentiment," and added that the survey, "just gives us an initial gauge to see if this type of thing would be acceptable within the community."  Grace said that if the public is supportive, certain types of urban agriculture might be allowed as soon as next spring.
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