Neighbors oppose campground proposal

NEW ULM — After hearing opposition from a couple neighbors, the Brown County Planning Commission unanimously recommended approval of a conditional use permit application Tuesday by Brian Domeier to allow a seasonal campground on Clear Lake in Section 14, Sigel Township.

Brown County commissioners will consider the application at 10 a.m. Tuesday, Nov. 19.

Brown County Zoning Administrator Laine Sletta said his office is working with the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (DNR) to ensure everything is done properly.

In a Sept. 30 letter to Brown County Assistant Zoning Administrator Robert Santaella, DNR Area Hydrologist Katie Wigen wrote that the DNR reviewed the project and confirmed it is consistent with Minnesota Shoreland Standards Rule 6120.3800 Subp.1.

Santaella said the application would allow a non-agricultural use in the A-1 Agricultural Protection Zone.

Permit conditions include requiring all recreational camping vehicles to have toilet and bathing facilities. If not, a central building shall provide the facilities.

“We’re concerned about firearms. I’m opposed,” said Lester Hillescheim, who lives just west of the proposed campground.

“The site was neglected for a very long time,” Brian Domeier said. “My intentions are to work with neighbors and not cause problems. I won’t allow guns. That’s the last thing I want.”

He talked more about the proposed campground site.

“It was a fun place for picnics when I was a kid,” Domeier said. “My goal is to share it with the community for fishing and camping. The sportsmen’s club is interested in hosting a fishing tournament there. If I can clean it up, it can be a super nice place.”

Hillescheim talked about an eight-inch drain tile that enters a creek that flows into Clear Lake.

“If a camper is there, they’ll have to find a way to pump (water) out.”

Glen Hillescheim said the road is “pretty rough, full of washboards in winter with ice fishing and it has frost boils.”

Sigel Township Treasurer Leo Guggisberg said the township doesn’t bill people for general road damage.

“The entrance road to the Lost Dog and Fox Hunters Park (just east of the proposed campground) was a problem for a long time. A lot of it has to do with Mother Nature,” Guggisberg said.

“It’s a beautiful place,” said Commissioner Anita Mohr.

Commissioner Tony Berg said he didn’t like to restrict somebody who bought and developed land unless they’re a burden to neighbors.

The commissioners unanimously approved final plat applications filed by:

• Mike Anderson, 4.54 acres, Section 28, Linden Township to split building site from tillable acres, all in the A-1 Zoning District, motion by Berg, seconded by John Rolloff.

• LaDonna Lilleodden, 7.53 acres, Section 17, Lake Hanska Township to split building site from tillable acres, all in the A-1 District, motion by Rolloff, seconded by Potter.

• Arlene Stewart, 3.78 acres, Section 8, Sigel Township, to expand Lot 2 Block 1, all in the A-1 Zone, motion by Berg, seconded by Mohr.

• Bob Runck, 3.72 acres, Section 17, North Star Township, to split building site from tillable acres, all in the A-1 District, motion by Potter, seconded by Mohr.

The commissioners also approved a preliminary plat application, Mark Bastian, 9.46 acres, Section 8, Cottonwood township, to expand Lot 1, Block 3, 3rd Addition, all in the A-1 District, motion by Berg, seconded by Potter.

Fritz Busch can be emailed at fbusch@nujournal.com.


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