Cindy moved to Brookfield in 1994 with her husband and three children in tow. It's been a very interesting seventeen years.
The addition is scheduled to be discussed at the November 7th Plan Commission meeting. What's the recommendation? Well gosh, we dont' know. True to form with a controversial topic, the final recommendation will be delievered at the Plan Commission meeting that evening.
Remember, the question has never been about developing this land, it's whether or not Waste Management (and yes, they are named on the agenda) should be rewarded and allowed to make money off the sale of the land when so much contamination has come off that landfill. There are still unanswered questions about the water plume that's developed to the south and east. And yes, as we saw before, there have been, even in the last few years, evidence of gas migration to the property that is wanting to be platted.
I did read in the Business Journal where Attorney and Developer Joseph C. Niebler has been very busy giving interviews that:
"The landfill itself is preserved as park space for the homes that are being developed around it. NFI Properties and Waste Management have gained clearance from state agencies including the Department of Natural Resources to build on additional land on the 101-acre property, Niebler said."
I just don't remember that landfill being park space. And no, it's not listed on this city document. It doesn't show up in the city's 2035 plan. I guess that reporter is just really bad at his job. I mean, surely the idea of a park in that subdivision isn't being misrepresented or anything. (I also offer that it was my understanding the state agencies didn't give clearance at all, but rather suggested a series of mandates for if the housing built.)
This is going to be interesting. Alderman Mark Nelson sits on the Plan Commission. He also represents the district the land is in. He's going to need to be very attentive. It's the first time he'll vote on the issue. Also to watch will be Mayor Steve Ponto. He will vote on the Plan Commission. A yes vote from him will go against his first no vote for the original project. That no vote kept him elected as an Alderman and got him elected by very narrow margin as Mayor.
You can expect Nelson and Ponto to vote no, but to have also lined up yes votes by the rest of the Commission in order for the item to pass.
What we'll watch after that is the Common Council vote. That could be interesting. I know Alderman Scott Berg very well, and I suspect he'll be sniffing the air prior to his vote. If he has a chance to vote to tie and force Ponto into a public decision, he'll do so. Also to watch: the vote is likely going to be close enough to sustain a Ponto veto should he apply one. Would he?
Ok, so I sort of miss the game every once in a while.
In the end, what I'd love to see is an indemnity clause that resides with the deed letting the City of Brookfield off the hook for any potential lawsuit for the life of the land. You know this development will pass, but if it passed with full understanding by the landowners that the City would never be held responsible for the decision to platt, well, I'd feel a little better about that.
And so would my wallet.