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Rib Mountain inching closer toward incorporation

Published: Sep. 14, 2021 at 9:07 PM CDT
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RIB MOUNTAIN, Wis. (WSAW) - The Town of Rib Mountain is getting closer to becoming a village, with the help of a petition that’s been circulating this summer.

In order for the Town of Rib Mountain to become a village, at least 50 people need to sign a petition consenting to that change and as it turns out, the Rib Mountain petition committee went much past that initial target.

“We’ve been collecting petitions for about a month, and have had much success. We’ve gotten about 300 petitions,” Rib Mountain Petition Committee Member Jerry Muehlbauer said.

The push for the Town of Rib Mountain to become an incorporated village has seen no signs of slowing down.

“The more signatures that we can gather, the more compelling it is to the courts that the community is behind this effort that this is really something citizens want,” Rib Mountain Petition Committee Member Pat Puyleart said.

With nearly 300 signatures on the petition, support has been overwhelming, and quite literally, it’s taken a town to become a village.

“Lots of enthusiasm from people, I set up a booth here at Doepke Park, put up a sign and people drove by and stopped and backed up and came in and said I want to sign, I want to sign,” Muehlbauer said.

The committee promoting the petition of Rib Mountain is made up of about 10 people.

The group meets on Wednesday, September 15 to verify the people who signed are eligible to vote in Rib Mountain, then the petition is off to Wausau circuit courts.

“People want to have more local control. Currently, we’re kind of under the thumb of the county, the county decides zoning and subdivision and boundaries and shorelines and so this would give us more independent control,” Muehlbauer said.

Muehlbauer and Puyleart said a big reason many are in favor of incorporation is to prevent annexation from surrounding municipalities.

Once the petition is in the hands of the circuit courts, it’s up to them and then the Incorporation Review Board to call a referendum for the change.

After Wednesday night’s meeting, the group plans to send the petition to the circuit courts by the first week of October.

They hope to have the referendum in April 2022 as the final step.

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