Unanimous Sturgeon Bay city council nixes joining Wiese Wulf appeal

It only took Sturgeon Bay’s new city council a few minutes in closed session Tuesday to vote unanimously to steer clear of more litigation over the controversial west side waterfront.


The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources issued a ruling in January that determined the location of a line dividing what west side waterfront property can be developed and what must be held for public use. That line is called the ordinary high water mark (OHWM). An appeal of that DNR decision was filed in February by John Wiese, Thomas “Cap” Wulf and twenty other individuals. The previous Sturgeon Bay city council voted recently to not join that appeal. 


At Tuesday’s meeting, the council considered a reversal of that position.

New council member Kirsten Reeths asked if the action of the previous council could be rescinded or re-written.


City attorney James Kalny explained the timeline for joining the appeal had expired and it would be unusual to rescind a letter sent to the court by a previous council.


Kalny told council members joining the appeal would be an “uphill climb.”


Council members went into closed session to discuss joining the Wiese Wulf appeal and came out a few minutes later, casting a unanimous vote against taking further action.


Full Audio during council meeting:



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