Town allows family to own horse in residential district

Ozaukee Press staff

Peter and Laura Burke of the Town of Belgium may now get a horse for their daughter.

The Town Board this month approved a conditional use permit to allow as many as two horses on their property at 451 Sandy Beach Road, which is zoned R-1 residential.

The approval came after a recommendation from the Plan Commission and after a public hearing.

The permit also prohibits boarding horses and allows up to 12 laying hens. The Burkes have six chickens.

The Plan Commission approved the permit in March, 4-2. Tom Winker, Larry Bares, Matt Fuller and Al Poull voted for it. Tom Bichler and Dennis Dimmer voted against it. Charlie Parks, John Paulus and

Jeremy Risch were absent.

Winker liked the idea of the Burke’s 12-year-old daughter Mackenzie taking care of an animal.

“It’s wonderful growing up with a pet. It’s going to give you something to do other than run the streets, and I think that’s a wonderful thing,” he said.

Peter Burke asked to allow a second horse as a companion. With nearly four acres, the property is big enough, Laura said.

The commission agreed.

The intent, Laura said, is to have an outdoor area and a pasture and probably a portable building and a stall.

“We’re not looking to ride it on the road or anything,” she said.

Mackenzie is involved with 4-H projects and would take care of the horse.

Winker liked that plan.

“I grew up on a farm. My kids grew up on a farm. You won’t believe the difference in a kid that has responsibilities versus a kid that’s sitting on the couch playing video games,” he said.

The commission agreed to prohibit boarding of horses.

“I don’t think residential is designed to run a business,” Winker said.

Dimmer voiced concern with allowing the horse, referencing a residence in the Town of Holland that had pigs and allowed calves that grew into steers, “and there were some issues with it, especially with the manure, because they just put it on a big pile.”

At the Town Board meeting, Peter said he plans to compost the manure. Mackenzie said they have a neighbor who would like it for a garden.

The permit was approved, 2-1. Bichler voted against it.



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Wisconsin’s largest paid circulation community weekly newspaper. Serving Port Washington, Saukville, Grafton, Fredonia, Belgium, as well as Ozaukee County government. Locally owned and printed in Port Washington, Wisconsin.

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