Disputed area

This is the area that is the subject of a lawsuit by the city of Madison against the village of McFarland, filed on Friday.

As expected, the city of Madison sued the village of McFarland and a group of landowners over McFarland’s planned annexation of land north of Siggelkow Road from the town of Blooming Grove.

The lawsuit, filed Friday in Dane County Circuit Court, contends that the annexation by McFarland is barred by a 2006 agreement between Madison and Blooming Grove to set the eventual absorption of the town into the city of Madison.

The area in question is 148 acres directly east of the Secret Places neighborhood on Madison’s Southeast Side. The property owners live on Storck Road, which runs north from Siggelkow Road. Along with McFarland, the owners of the property are named as defendants in the lawsuit.

A cooperative plan, agreed to by the city and the town in June 2006 and approved by the state Department of Administration four months later, sets the terms for the town’s eventual dissolution on Oct. 31, 2027, when all of its remaining territory would become part of the city of Madison.

The lawsuit states that under the plan, the town’s boundaries can only be changed at the time of the plan’s approval and the time when the town dissolves. In between 2006 and 2027, the plan states, any boundary changes to town territory north of Siggelkow Road can only put that land in the city of Madison, the lawsuit states.

McFarland has maintained that because it is not a party to the cooperative plan, it cannot be barred from annexing the land. Village administrator Matt Schuenke said in November that the city and town could have included the village in the agreement if they did not want an annexation like this to happen.

But the lawsuit states that in 2005, Madison and Blooming Grove notified McFarland of their intent to create a cooperative plan and held a public hearing on it the following year, but never received any comments about it from McFarland.

The lawsuit also contends that Madison has already invested in infrastructure that would serve the area to be annexed by McFarland.

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