Daily News - 05/17/2016
No pit, no problem?
Many readers may know about the Scenic Pit and our very public legal battle with Richfield over the right to restore our abandoned mine by accepting clean fill. The DNR approved our WPDES Permit and the Wisconsin Supreme Court already ruled in 1996 “clean fill facilities are exempt from local approvals” (DeRosso Landfill Co. vs. City of Oak Creek).
The Village Code also states how to enforce this section of the code. According to Section 263-4(A), “It shall be the duty of th e Washington County Sheriff or village law enforcement officer, the fire chief, the building inspector, and the Planning and Zoning Administrator to enforce those provisions …. and [make] inspections upon complaint …” I filed a complaint with the village because I have an open pit that is more than 29 acres, it is an attractive nuisance, it is eroding and the village is violating its own ordinances by not allowing me to correct this health-and-safety hazard in our community. Our case is at the Court of Appeals and I am confident the court will rule in our favor and we will be accepting clean fill, but in the interim, how do we make it safe?
The village’s response? “There is no open pit on your property.” They’re not taking any action despite their own ordinance requiring them to. I welcome you to visit us at the Scenic Pit and determine yourself if it’s a pit or not. We are located at 609 Scenic Road, Colgate, WI 53017.
What about private property rights?
Danah Zoulek Colgate