City could join OHWM lawsuit

The city of Sturgeon Bay could see itself in another lawsuit involving the ordinary high water mark on its west waterfront. The Sturgeon Bay Common Council is being asked to pick sides in a lawsuit involving a group of 22 local citizens and the Department of Natural Resources. At stake is the OHWM for Parcel 92, which the DNR issued a declaratory ruling in January based on a meander line drawn in 1835. Development of the parcel depends on where the line determining the public trust doctrine is drawn and is the reason why two lawsuits have developed in the last four years. City Administrator Josh Van Lieshout admitted during the last ad hoc West Waterfront Planning meeting that he expects the council would want to participate in the case if the OHWM ruling was appealed.


The lawsuit is just part of the west waterfront-related discussion slated to take place during the Tuesday night meeting at Sturgeon Bay City Hall. The Sturgeon Bay Common Council will consider approving a development agreement with the Friends of the Sturgeon Bay Public Waterfront, authorizing a grant application on behalf of the Door County Maritime Museum, and supporting the development of a National Estuarine Research Reserve in the area.

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