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Statutory Interpretation – Cooperative Plan

WI Supreme Court

Case Name: City of Mayville v. State of Wisconsin Department of Administration

Case No.: 2021 WI 57

Focus: Statutory Interpretation – Cooperative Plan

We review a published decision of the court of appeals affirming the order of the Circuit Court for Dodge County that reversed the Department of Administration’s (the “Department”) approval of a cooperative plan (the “Plan”) between the Village of Kekoskee (the “Village”) and the Town of Williamstown (the “Town”) and remanded the matter back to the Department. The circuit court determined that the cooperative plan statute, Wis. Stat. § 66.0307 (2017-18), did not permit municipalities to use cooperative plans to “absorb an entire Town into a Village.” The court of appeals affirmed on modified grounds concluding that the Plan “changed” the City of Mayville’s (“Mayville”) boundary line such that Mayville was required to be a party to the Plan.

We conclude first that Mayville has standing to seek judicial review of the Plan. Next, we conclude that the “Village of Williamstown Detachment Area” set forth in the Plan changes Mayville’s boundary line. Because the Plan changed Mayville’s boundary line, Wis. Stat. § 66.0307(2) required that Mayville be a party to the Plan. Mayville was not a party to the Plan, therefore, we conclude that the Department erroneously interpreted § 66.0307(2) in approving the Plan. Accordingly, we affirm the decision of the court of appeals, which remanded the Plan to the circuit court to remand to the Department.




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Derek A Hawkins is Corporate Counsel, at Salesforce.

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