Jim Healy, assistant to Village Administrator/Planner then presented a community build-out review focusing on the North East Corner of Village of Richfield or Hwy 41/45 corridor. Three maps for Hwy 41/45 corridor were provided for attendees to review: 1. current approved land use plan, 2. a new plan for added residential zoning and the last with some non-residential zoning including added high-density housing.
After the review, attendees participated in a round table discussion with residents at each table. About 150 people attended. Jim thanked all for their thoughtful and considerate discussions.
Next, members of each table indicated which map or variation of a map they preferred. This was followed by open comments.
Sharon Monrovic - She had a different issue noting, “No place for us who want to live in Richfield with no condos available”.
Gil Frank – Gil said/read, “Washington county taxes are 1/3 more than Waukesha”. He had no facts or sources to support that statement. He continued to speak and read all of his speech. In the middle of reading his speech he said out loud to himself, "Oh that has been covered". (Who might have written that speech for him before coming to the meeting? Everyone else spoke without any notes.)
Norb Weyer – Norb noted, “Hwy 175 is perfect spot for condos.” He asked, “Who wants to live along Interstate 41 let me see your hands. I do not see any raised hands”. Then Norb explained that commercial development does not create any additional cost to residents, “Current commercial area along 175 pays for street lights, pays for own snow plowing, it is no burden to the tax payers”. He continued, "Richfield needs commercial along Interstate 41. If developer wants TIF just say No to TIF".
Dr. Doug Cherkauer – He monitors water levels in Richfield and “happy to say our supply in the village is in wonderful shape if we maintain our current style of development, low density”. He credits village for having a ground water protection ordinance requiring new development to meet standards to protect our aquifer. In the Hwy 41 corridor water supply is weakest and “village should be cautious to have development that is not heavy on water demand”.
Jeff Gonyo – Jeff explained, “he represents members of Hwy J group who want no development, Polk residents have lower taxes than Richfield due to 5 acre lots”. What he did not say is Town of Polk does not provide snow plowing in subdivisions, residents have to contract with a private business for snow plowing. This was the very reason that business owners in Helsan Business Park requested annexation into Richfield. They wanted snowplowing services for the taxes that are paid. He stated his address is on Hwy 164, Slinger.
Bob Lalk – Bob expressed his concern about recent scare tactics by some residents in the village. He stated, “MMSD does not have sewer and water approved past Friestadt Road in Germantown so no sewer is coming to Richfield, and it is too costly to come from Jackson”.
Each table then submitted their preferred map. Jim Healy closed by noting residents Input was valuable and much appreciated.