WAUSAU – Property owners on the southern edge of the village of Maine will not be able to annex into Wausau, according to a Friday ruling from Marathon County Judge Jill Falstad.
Wausau sued the village, its northwestern neighbor, in early 2016 for alleged violations of the open meetings law. Officials in Maine held several closed-door meetings in 2015 leading up to Maine’s incorporation from a town into a village.
Incorporation seals off municipal borders from annexations.
Falstad ruled in November that Maine’s incorporation is final. And on Friday, she ruled that Maine’s borders are set, despite the fact that some property owners in the village want to to join Wausau and the city wants to expand.
“Any existing or future ordinances purporting to annex property from the village of Maine to the city of Wausau are void and unenforceable,” Falstad wrote.
“What the city wants the court to do has no basis in law,” she wrote. “Open meetings law does not permit courts to invalidate actions taken at meetings that did not violate the open meetings law.”
Falstad sided with Maine last fall, securing its incorporation, because Maine officials voted on the incorporation in meetings that weren’t included in the list of alleged open meetings violations, she wrote.
Wausau filed its lawsuit with five Maine landowners. The city released a statement Friday reinforcing its stance in the lawsuit.
click here to read more.