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Village of Maine
A Nice Place to Live
Comprehensive Land Use Plan

Latest Comprehensive Land Use Plan

Town of Maine

Comprehensive Plan

Conditions and Issues

Town of Maine 
Conditions and Issues


1. Introduction and Summary 1
2. Demographics 2
3. Natural Resources 8
4. Land Use 14
5. Transportation 22
6. Utilities 31
7. Housing 35
8. Cultural Resources 41
9. Community Facilities 43
10. Parks 47
11. Economic Development 49
12. Intergovernmental Cooperation 55

List of Tables

Table 2-1: Demographic Change, 1970-2000 2
Table 2-2: Population by Age Group, 2000 3
Table 2-3: Population Projections, 2000-2030 3
Table 2-3a: Population Projections (WDOA), 2000-
2030 4
Table 2-4: Household Projections � 2000-2030 4
Table 2-4a: Household Projections � 2000-2030 4
Table 2-5: Education Attainment 5
Table 2-6: Household Income Levels, 2000 5
Table 2-7: Occupation by Sector, 2000 6
Table 2-8: Employment Projections, 2000-2030 6
Table 2-8a: Employment Projections (MPO), 2000-
Table 4-1: Land Use Cover Classification, 2000 14
Table 4-2: Land in Forest Preservation Programs 
(in acres), 1998-2002 16
Table 4-3: Public Owned Land (in acres), 1998-
2002 17
Table 4-4: Per Acre Assessed Land Values (in dollars), 1998-2002 19
Table 5-1: Summary of Pavement Conditions 27
Table 7-1: Number of Housing Units by Type and Tenure 35
Table 7-2: Changes in Housing Stock 36
Table 7-3: Age of Community Housing Stock 36
Table 7-4: Physical Housing Stock 37
Table 7-5: Median Housing Value 37
Table 7-6: Range of Housing Values 37
Table 7-7: Housing Affordability 38
Table 8-1: Known Cemeteries 42
Table 9-1: Wausau School District Enrollment 43
Table 9-2: Area Child Care Providers 46
Table 11-1: Marathon County Top 10 Industry 
Groups Based on Number of Employees 51
Table 11-2: Population and Employment by 
Sector, 2000 51
Table 11-3: Employment Projections, 2000-2030 52
Table 11-4: Percent Change in Employment, 
2000-2030 52
Table 11-5: Employment Projections, 2000-2030 
(MPO) 52

List of Figures

Figure 3-1: Rivers and Floodplains
Figure 3-2: Wetland Types
Figure 3-3: Depth to Groundwater
Figure 3-4: Depth to Bedrock
Figure 3-5: Soil Association
Figure 3-6: Prime Farm Soils
Figure 3-7: Slopes
Figure 4-1: Existing Land Use/Land Cover
Figure 4-2: Existing Zoning
Figure 4-3: Farm Preservation Contracts and Ex. Agricultural Zoning
Figure 5-1: Functional Classification
Figure 5-2: WISLR Ratings
Figure 5-3: WISLR Road Surface Type
Figure 5-4: Regional Trails
Figure 5-5: Regional Transportation
Figure 6-1: Wausau Metro Urban Service Area
Figure 6-2: Suitable Soils for Septic Tank Absorption
Figure 6-3: Depth to Bedrock
Figure 6-4: Watersheds
Figure 9-1: School and Library Facilities
Figure 9-2: Police Service Districts
Figure 9-3: Fire Service Districts
Figure 9-4: Hospitals and Clinics
Figure 10-1: Regional Recreation Facilities

List of Acronyms

303 (d) list�waters designated as �impaired� under section 303 (d) of the U.S. Clean Water Act.

AADT�Annual Average Daily Traffic

AHI�Architecture & History Inventory (a database of the Wisconsin Historical Society).

BMPs�Best Management Practices

CCR&R�Child Care Resource and Referral Network

CDBG�Community Development Block Grant

CES�Cropland Evaluation System (Marathon County)

Comm 83�Chapter 83 of the Wisconsin Administrative Code under the Department of Commerce, setting standards for regulation of private sewage systems.

CRP�Conservation Reserve Program

CTH�County Trunk Highway

CWA�Central Wisconsin Airport

DCPZ�Department of Conservation, Planning and Zoning (Marathon County)

DWD�Department of Workforce Development

EMS�Emergency Medical Services

ERW�Exceptional Resource Waters, a designation by the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources. 

ETZ�Extra-Territorial Zoning 

FCL�Forest Crop Law

FEMA�Federal Emergency Management Agency

FIRM�Flood Insurance Rate Maps

HOME�Home Investment Partnerships Program

HUD�U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development

LHOG�Local Housing Organization Grant

LOS�Level of Service (related to amount of traffic and congestion on a roadway, measure from Level A, no congestion and freely moving traffic, to Level F, traffic gridlock).

LWRMP�Land and Water Resource Management Plan (Marathon County)

MFL�Managed Forest Law

MPO�Wausau Area Metropolitan Planning Organization

NCHC�North Central Health Care

NCWRPC�North Central Wisconsin Regional Planning Commission

NRHP�National Register of Historic Places

NTC�Northcentral Technical College

ORW�Outstanding Resource Waters, a designation under the U.S. Clean Water Act.

PASER�Pavement Surface Evaluation Rating

PMP�Pavement Management Plan

SHPO�State Historic Preservation Office

STF Data�Summary Tape File, referring to data files of the 2000 U.S. Census.

STH�State Trunk Highway

TDP�Transit Development Plan (Wausau Area Transit System)

TIP�Transportation Improvement Program (Marathon County)

USDA�United States Department of Agriculture

USH�U.S. Highway

UW-MC�University of Wisconsin�Marathon County

WATS�Wausau Area Transit System

WDA�Wisconsin Department of Agriculture

WDNR�Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources

WDOA�Wisconsin Department of Administration

WDOT�Wisconsin Department of Transportation

WHEDA�Wisconsin Housing and Economic Development Authority

WISLR�Wisconsin Information System for Local Roads

WPS�Wisconsin Public Service Corporation

1. Introduction and Summary 

The Town of Maine Conditions and Issues Report documents existing conditions in the Town and identifies primary issues or concerns the Town may need to address in the future. It includes information on the Town's demographics, natural resources, land use, transportation, utilities, housing, cultural resources, community facilities, parks, economic development, and intergovernmental cooperation. This report provides a backdrop for the development of the final plan, which will outline policies and actions the Town can take to address identified issues and guide future growth in Maine. Some key findings include:

� The Town of Maine is located in the north central part of Marathon County, directly northwest of the City of Wausau. Because of its adjacency to the City, the Town is experiencing some fringe growth pressures and increasing pressure to convert farmland to rural residential development.

� Over the last 30 years population has grown slower than both the County and the State. However, in the last decade, Maine�s population has grown at the same rate as the County, despite loss of land and population through annexations. 

� Much of the northern and western portions of the Town remain fairly rural in character, while the southeastern portion of the Town, adjacent to the City of Wausau is experiencing denser, more urban type development. Given the adjacency with the City of Wausau, annexations are expected to continue in the southeast portion of the Town. 

� Town roads are generally in good repair. However, damage from heavy farm equipment increases the need and frequency of maintenance. 

� Residents and businesses in the Town use private on-site wastewater treatment systems. The nearest public wastewater treatment systems are located in the Village of Brokaw and the City of Wausau. Private wells provide water for domestic and farm use. Public water systems are available in both Brokaw and Wausau. The desire to obtain public sewer and water service can be a primary incentive to annex into Brokaw or Wausau.

� Housing within the Town consists primarily of single family, detached residences. These homes are scattered throughout the Town, although densities are higher in the southeast, near the border with the City of Wausau. 

� Maine's economy is varied, but agriculture remains an important sector. In the coming years, it is predicted that the agricultural economy will continue to decline in the Town, as well as the County and State as a whole. 

� The Town's primary intergovernmental concern is annexation by the Village of Brokaw and/or the City of Wausau. The Town would like to work cooperatively with the Village of Brokaw and the City of Wausau to receive limited public utilities without annexation.

2. Demographics 

This analysis is intended to describe the existing demographics of the Town of Maine and identify the major demographic trends impacting the Maine over the next few decades. Data for both Marathon County and the State of Wisconsin are also listed, where available, for comparison.

Population and Households

Historical Trends 

Over the past 30 years, the population of the Maine has increased by 12 percent. As shown on Table 2-1, this was about half of the percent increase experienced by Marathon County (29%) and the State (21%). However, during the last decade, the rate of population increase in the Town (9%) was virtually the same as that for both the County (9%) and the State (10%). 

It is interesting to note that population growth over the last decade in Maine was similar to that in the County overall, despite the loss of a significant amount of land through annexations. In the early 1990s a large area of land north of CTH K and west of US 51 was annexed into the City of Wausau and in the late 1990s a larger area of land around CTH U and 120th was annexed into the City. This suggests that population growth in the Town was high enough in the 1990s to offset the loss through annexations during that same period. Annexation of about 100 acres into the Village of Brokaw occurred in about 1997 and therefore, the corresponding loss of population should be reflected in Table 2-1.

The increase in total households over the past 30 years was substantially higher than the increase in population. This is likely due to a decrease in household size, which reflects the national trend toward more households comprised of singles, couples without children, and widows or widowers. 

Table 2-1: Demographic Change, 1970-2000 




2000 % change 
1970 to 2000 % change 
1990 to 2000
Total Population
Maine 2,155 2,163 2,206 2,407 +12% +9%
County 97,457 111,270 115,400 125,834 +29% +9%
State 4,417,821 4,705,767 4,891,769 5,363,675 +21% +10%
Total Households
Maine 613 701 728 842 +37% +16%
County 29,771 37,865 41,534 47,402 +59% +14%
State 1,328,804 1,652,261 1,822,118 2,084,544 +57% +14%
Average Household Size
Maine 3.5 3.09 3.03 2.86 -18% -6%
County 3.27 2.90 2.75 2.60 -20% -5%
State 3.22 2.35 2.68 2.50 -22% -7%
Source: Wisconsin Department of Administration 

The population of Marathon County grew from 115,400 in 1990 to 125,834 in 2000, an increase of 9 percent compared to a 10 percent increase in the State and 8.7 percent in the U.S. The most recent estimates (Wisconsin Department of Administration [WDOA], Demographic Services, 2002) show an annual growth rate of 0.7 percent in all three jurisdictions. Population growth in Marathon County has been concentrated in the urbanized area surrounding Wausau.

As shown in Table 2-2, the largest age groups in Maine include residents between 35-54 years old, with the median age being 38.9 years. This is slightly older than the average age in the County or State. The distribution of population across age groups in the Town is very similar to that of the County and State.

Table 2-2: Population by Age Group, 2000 
Age Group Percent of Population
Maine County State
Under 5 years 4.7 6.4 6.4
5 to 9 years 7.6 7.5 7.1
10 to 14 years 8.7 8.0 7.5
15 to 19 years 8.3 7.7 7.6
20 to 24 years 4.1 5.4 6.7
25 to 34 years 9.5 13.0 13.2
35 to 44 years 18.0 16.5 16.3
45 to 54 years 16.7 13.9 13.7
55 to 59 years 6.1 4.8 4.7
60 to 64 years 4.4 3.8 3.8
65 to 74 years 6.9 6.4 6.6
75 to 84 years 4.2 4.8 4.7
85 years and over 1.0 1.7 1.8
Median Age 38.9 36.3 36.0
Source: Wisconsin Department of Administration, 2000

Population Forecasts

Population projections were completed in 5-year increments between 2000 and 2030. Projections were computed by the North Central Wisconsin Regional Planning Commission (NCWRPC) and are based on a historical growth rate between 1980 and 2000. These are shown in Table 2-3.

Assuming a moderate rate of growth, population is estimated to increase by 337, or 14 percent between 2000 and 2030. This is slightly higher than the County increase of 13 percent. The estimates suggest an overall increase in population by 2030 between 9 percent if a lower growth rate occurs and 19 percent if a higher growth rate occurs.

Table 2-3: Population Projections, 2000-2030 
Total Population by Year
2000 2005 2010 2015 2020 2025 2030
Maine 2,407 2,463 2,519 2,575 2,632 2,688 2,744
County 125,834 128,632 131,430 134,217 137,022 139,820 142,618
Source: Marathon County 2030 Population and Employment Projections Methodology Report, NCWRPC, 2003

Table 2-3a shows population projections completed by the WDOA, Demographic Services Center. The WDOA population projections are recognized as Wisconsin�s official population projections in accordance with Wisconsin Statue 16.96. These projections are based on the same historical time period as those developed by NCWRPC, however more recent years carry a greater weight in the WDOA�s projected populations. Additionally, the WDOA projections are based on the historical population trends of individual communities, whereas the NCWRPC projections are based on trends in the planning sub-areas. 

The NCWRPC projections provide a baseline to determine trends in the sub-area. They are useful in identifying future population beyond the borders of individual communities. The WDOA projections are more useful at the local municipality level.

Table 2-3a: Population Projections (WDOA), 2000-2030
Total Population by Year
2000 2005 2010 2015 2020 2025 2030 %
Maine 2,407 2,435 2,500 2,566 2,635 2,702 2,759 +15%
County 125,834 130,242 134,504 138,836 143,308 147,112 150,255 +19%
Source: Wisconsin Department of Administration
2030 numbers projected from 2025 WDOA estimates based on countywide growth rate rates

Household Forecasts

Like population, household projections were completed in 5-year increments between 2000 and 2030. As shown on Table 2-1, the average persons-per-household in Maine was estimated to be 2.86 in 2000. Persons-per-household for the County was calculated to be 2.59 based on the average persons-per-household for all five planning sub-areas.

Assuming a moderate rate of growth, the number of households in Maine is estimated to increase by 117, or 14 percent between 2000 and 2030. This is slightly higher than the County increase of 13 percent. 

Table 2-4: Household Projections � 2000-2030
Total Households by Year
2000 2005 2010 2015 2020 2025 2030 %
Maine 842 861 880 900 920 940 959 +14
County 48,585 49,665 50,745 51,821 52,904 53,985 55,065 +13
Source: Derived from data in Marathon County 2030 Population and Employment Projections Methodology Report, NCWRPC, 2003

Like the population projection, the WDOA household projections are recognized as Wisconsin�s official population projections in accordance with Wisconsin Statue 16.96. and are based on the historical population trends of individual communities. Table 2-4a includes household projections completed by the WDOA.

Table 2-4a: Household Projections (WDOA), 2000-2030
Total Households by Year
2000 2005 2010 2015 2020 2025 2030 %
Maine 842 866 911 952 992 1,028 1,058 +26%
County 47,702 50,109 52,902 55,589 58,181 60,283 62,035 +30%
Source: Wisconsin Department of Administration - 2030 numbers projected from 2025 WDOA estimates based on countywide growth rate rates

Education and Income Levels

Education statistics for the Town of Maine are shown below in Table 2-5. According to 2000 Census data, 88 percent of Maine residents have a high school education or higher. This compares to 83.8 percent for the County, and 85.1 percent for the State. In Maine, 21 percent of residents have a bachelor�s degree or higher. This is slightly higher than the number of persons with a bachelor�s degree or higher in the County and State with 18.3 percent and 22.4 percent respectively. 

Table 2-5: Educational Attainment
(population age 25 and over)
Maine County State
Educational Attainment Number Percent Percent Percent
Less than 9th Grade 113 7.0 8.2 5.4
9th to 12th Grade, No Diploma 77 4.7 8.0 9.6
High School Graduate 647 39.8 38.0 34.6
Some College, No Degree 191 11.8 18.3 20.6
Associates Degree 256 15.8 9.2 7.5
Bachelor's Degree 252 15.5 12.6 15.3
Graduate or Professional Degree 89 5.5 5.7 7.2

Percent high school graduate or higher 88.3 83.8 85.1
Percent bachelor's degree or higher 21.0 18.3 22.4
Source: Wisconsin Department of Administration, 2000

As shown in Table 2-6, median household income for residents in Maine was $57,679 in 2000. This compares higher than both Marathon County with a median of $45,165 and the State overall at $43,791. Income distribution among all income levels is approximately proportionate to levels observed county- and statewide.

Table 2-6: Household Income Levels, 2000
Maine County State
Income Level Number Percent Percent Percent
Less than $10,000 11 1.3 5.9 7.1
$10,000 - $14,999 45 5.3 5.4 5.8
$15,000 - $24,999 60 7.1 12.3 12.7
$25,000 - $34,999 46 5.4 13.1 13.2
$35,000 - $49,999 202 23.8 19.4 18.1
$50,000 - $74,999 235 27.7 25.2 22.7
$75,000 - $99,999 148 17.5 10.5 10.9
$100,000 - $149,000 65 7.7 5.4 6.4
$150,000 - $199,999 4 0.5 1.3 1.5
$200,000 or More 31 3.7 1.6 1.5
Total Households 847 100.0 100.0 100.0
Median Household Income $57,679 - $45,165 $43,791
Source: Wisconsin Department of Administration, 2000

Employment Characteristics 

Table 2-7 illustrates the breakdown, by occupation, of the employed population of the Town of Maine in 2000. The �employed population� is defined as people living in the Town who are 16 years and older. In 2000, Maine had an employed population of 1,382. Most residents were employed in sales and office, management, professional and related, or production, transportation and material moving occupations. The relatively low percent of people employed in farming related occupations suggests that many Town residents commute to jobs in the Wausau metropolitan area.

Table 2-7: Occupation by Sector, 2000
Sector Number Percent

Management, professional, and related occupations 484 35.0
Service occupations 134 9.7
Sales and office occupations 366 26.5
Farming, fishing, and forestry occupations 15 1.1
Construction, extraction, and maintenance occupations 124 9.0
Production, transportation, and material moving occupations 259 18.7

Total Employed* 1,382 100
Source: Wisconsin Department of Administration
* �Total Employed� represents employed civilian population 16 years and over

Employment Forecasts - An employment forecast completed by the NCWRPC in 2003 indicates continued employment growth for the Town of Maine. By the year 2030, it is estimated that the Town will provide employment to over 2,000 workers. This represents an employment increase of 24 percent and assumes a moderate growth rate based on the rate of change in employment between 1990-2000 for non-farm employment. The estimates suggest an overall increase in employment by 2030 between 19.6 percent if a lower growth rate occurs and 32 percent if a higher growth rate occurs.

Table 2-8: Employment Projections � 2000-2030
Total Employment by Year
2000 2005 2010 2015 2020 2025 2030
Maine 1,617 1,681 1,746 1,810 1,874 1,939 2,003
County 72,508 75,625 78,742 81,859 84,976 88,093 91,210
Source: Marathon County 2030 Population and Employment Projections Methodology Report, NCWRPC, 2003

Employment projections were also prepared for the 2035 LRTP, and are based on building permit and other data gathered between 2000 and 2005. These projections, shown in Table 2-8a, indicate a higher rate of employment growth than the NCWRPC projections, however, the number of total jobs is significantly lower. This is primarily due to the difference in number of jobs reported in 2000 by the NCWRPC versus those prepared for the LRTP.

Table 2-8a: Employment Projections, (MPO) 2000-2030

Total Employment by Year
2000 2005 2010 2015 2020 2025 2030 % chg.
NCWRPC 1,617 1,681 1,746 1,810 1,874 1,939 2,003 24%
MPO Adjusted 943 989 1,036 1,082 1,129 1,175 1,222 29.6%
Source: Marathon County 2030 Population and Employment Projections Methodology Report, NCWRPC 2003 and Marathon County Metropolitan Planning Commission [MPO adjusted - prepared for 2035 LRTP]

Demographic Trends 

� Maine has experienced an increase in population (12%) and households (37%) over the last 30 years. It appears most population growth occurred during the last decade, despite loss of land and population through annexations.

� The population of Maine is slightly older, on average than the general population of the County or State, with a median age of 38.9 years compared to 36.3 and 36.0 for the County and State, respectively.

� Maine has a fairly high percent (88.3%) of residents with high school diplomas or higher, compared to 83.8 percent for the County, and 85.1 percent for the State.

� The median household income in Maine (2000) is $57,679, which is significantly higher than median income in the County ($45,165) or State ($43,791).

� Both population and employment are expected to grow at a moderate rate between 2000 and 2030. However, growth will continue to be off-set by loss of population and employment through annexation. 


� Loss of Population and Valuation to Annexation � Given the Town�s adjacency to both the Village of Brokaw and City of Wausau, annexation is a continual possibility. This results in a loss of population, households, and thus overall decline in property valuation in Maine.

� Annexation also results in irregular borders, incompatible land use, inefficient government services, and unsafe neighborhoods. 

3. Natural Resources 

Because natural resource features do not follow geo-political boundaries, it is important to consider their patterns and inter-relationships on a broader scale. In addition, many of the programs for protecting or mitigating impacts to natural resources are administered at the County, State or Federal level. Thus, an overview of recent county-wide natural resource planning efforts is described below, followed by a description of local natural resource conditions. Of particular interest are geographic areas of the landscape encompassing valued natural resources features grouped below by resource type, including water, soil and biological resources. 

Recent Planning Efforts Related to Natural Resources

In the last decade, several plans were prepared by the County specifically to address protection and management of natural resources. These plans may be used as resources to guide local policy and decision making regarding resource management and protection. In addition to the plans listed below, Marathon County and several local communities have adopted park and outdoor recreation plans that discuss natural resource based recreational facilities and protection strategies. These are described in more detail in the Parks section.

� Marathon County Land and Water Resource Management Plan (LWRMP) - In 2001, Marathon County adopted a LWRMP in accordance with Wisconsin Statutes (Wisconsin Act 27, Chapter 92.10). This plan was updated in 2005. The primary intent of this plan is to identify a vision for natural resource management in Marathon County and outline strategies to protect the quality and quantity of soil and water resources. Marathon County encompasses portions of 22 watersheds. The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (WDNR) ranked these watersheds according to water pollution impacts and designated five as �priority� watersheds to receive special planning and funding through the voluntary, State-funded Priority Watershed Program. The County�s Department of Conservation, Planning and Zoning (DCPZ) works with the WDNR to implement the program. Program funding is used to hire staff to assist in developing management plans for each watershed and to provide cost sharing to landowners for implementation of �best management practices� (BMPs) to achieve the program objectives. 

� Marathon County 2001 Groundwater Protection Guide � This guide is an extension of the efforts established with adoption of the Marathon County Groundwater Plan in 1988. It is intended to guide local and County officials in setting policy. It also serves as a resource of information about groundwater and other natural resources and recommends strategies to address issues related to groundwater protection.

� Marathon County Forest Ten-Year Comprehensive Land Use Plan, 1996-2005 � This plan includes recommendations to guide management of forest land in Marathon County in accordance with the County Parks, Recreation, and Forestry Department�s mission to manage and protect the County forest on a sustainable basis for ecological, economic, educational, recreational, and research needs of present and future generations. It provides substantial information on existing forest resources and as well as information regarding the roles of the various agencies and regulatory framework related to forest management. This plan is currently being updated and is anticipated to be adopted in 2006. The updated plan will cover a 15 year time frame.

Water Resources

Marathon County contains abundant water resources. Many have remained in a fairly pristine state and others are in need of focused efforts to improve water quality. Outstanding Resource Waters (ORW) and Exceptional Resource Waters (ERW) designations are derived from an amendment to the U.S. Clean Water Act, which directed states to identify waters that were largely unaffected by pollution and should remain that way. States were required to develop �anti-degradation� policies to protect these waters from pollution. As a result, wastewater entering an ORW must be as clean as the water in the �outstanding� water body. The anti-degradation policies only apply to point sources of pollution, such as an industrial discharge pipe. However, Wisconsin has other programs in place to control non-point source pollution, such as animal waste and pesticides in farm runoff, urban runoff, and failing septic systems.

The Wisconsin Natural Resources Board also wanted to extend higher levels of protection to top trout waters. As such, the WDNR established a second category of waterways to be protected under the anti-degradation policy; these are the ERW. Wastewater entering ERW must meet minimum clean water standards, although higher standards are encouraged where feasible.

There are no designated ORW or ERW in the Town of Maine.

Water resources that have been significantly degraded are identified as �impaired waters�. Four of the 22 watersheds in Marathon County have been identified as �impaired waters� on the �303 (d) list� of the U.S. Clean Water Act. The list identifies waters that do not meet current water quality standards and merit water quality improvement and protection. None of these are located in the Town of Maine.

The County�s resource management planning efforts are described in more detail in the Marathon County Land and Water Resource Management Plan (2001).

Streams/Rivers �The Wisconsin River forms the eastern border of the Town of Maine and several creeks and tributaries flow into the river as shown on Figure 3-1. Silver Creek, one of the largest creeks, flows diagonally through the north central part of the Town, entering the Wisconsin River above Brokaw.

Floodplains - Land within the 100-year floodplain is located adjacent to the Wisconsin River (see Figure 3-1). Floodplains consist of land likely to be covered by floodwater during the regional (100-year) flood. Floodplain areas are based on information compiled by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) on Flood Insurance Rate Maps (FIRM). The floodplain includes the floodway and the flood fringe. 

Wetlands � Wetlands in Wisconsin were defined by the State Legislature in 1978 as: "an area where water is at, near, or above the land surface long enough to be capable of supporting aquatic or hydrophytic (water-loving) vegetation and which has soils indicative of wet conditions.�

Programs in three levels of government - local, State and Federal - regulate activities in wetlands. There are dozens of wetland types in Wisconsin, characterized by vegetation, soil type and degree of saturation or water cover. Some of the more prominent wetland types are:

� Aquatic Bed wetlands contain plants growing entirely on or in a water body no deeper than 6'. Plants may include pond-weed, duckweed, lotus and water-lilies.

� Marshes are characterized by standing water and dominated by cattails, bulrushes, pickerel-weed, lake sedges and/or giant bur-reed

� Sedge or "Wet" Meadows wetlands may have saturated soils, rather than standing water, more often than not. Sedges, grasses and reeds are dominant, but look also for blue flag iris, marsh milkweed, sneeze-weed, mint and several species of goldenrod and aster.

� Scrub/Shrub wetlands include bogs and alder thickets and are characterized by woody shrubs and small trees such as tag alder, bog birch, willow and dogwood.

� Forested wetlands include bogs and forested floodplain complexes. They are characterized by trees 20 feet or more in height such as tamarack, white cedar, black spruce, elm, black ash, green ash and silver maple.

As shown on Figure 3-2, most wetlands in Maine are located along the Wisconsin River and its tributary creeks. Most wetlands are categorized as forested or scrub/shrub type wetlands.

Groundwater �Depth to groundwater varies from shallow to moderately deep as shown on Figure 3-3. Groundwater supply is limited or difficult to access in some areas, mostly due to the presence of high bedrock as shown on Figure 3-4. 

Soil Resources

Soils Types � As shown on Figure 3-5, there are several soil associations present in Maine. Areas adjacent to the Wisconsin River consist of Mahtomedi-Fordum-Sturgeon and Chetek-Rosholt-Oesterle in the north. The northwest corner of the Town consists of Magnor-Cable soils and the center and southern portions of the Town are mostly Fenwood-Rietbrock-Rozellville soils. 

Susceptibility for soil erosion is similar to the average soil loss rate in Marathon County overall and is not a major concern.

Prime Farm Soils - Areas most suitable for agricultural production, with minimal limitations and requiring minimal inputs for successful production have been identified as �prime farm lands� by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA). The USDA further defines prime farm lands into land capability classes. Land Capability Classification (LCC) is a system of grouping soils primarily on the basis of their capability to produce common cultivated crops and pasture plants without deteriorating over a long period of time. Prime farm lands in Marathon County have been classified into the USDA Land Capability Class II.

Figure 3-6 illustrates soils that have been identified as prime farm soils according to the USDA. Group 1 soils represent the best farmland in Marathon County and Group 2 soils, while also very good, have some restrictions due to poor soil drainage. There is a significant amount of Group 1 and 2 prime farm soils in Maine; particularly in the south and west. It should be noted that not all prime farm soils are used for farming; some have been developed with residential or other uses. The �prime farm soils� designation simply indicates that these soils are good productive farmland.

Steep Slopes � Most steep slopes are located along the Wisconsin River or tributary creeks. Steep slopes are defined as slopes with gradients over 12 percent, which pose development constraints and may be more susceptible to erosion. Figure 3-7 illustrates where steep slopes exist and separates them into two categories. Category D includes areas with slopes between 12 and 20 percent. Category E includes areas where slopes are all greater than 15 percent.

Non-Metallic Mining - There are about 400 operating or abandoned sand, gravel, decomposed (�rotten�) granite and stone excavation sites in Marathon County. In 1989 the County adopted a Non-metallic Mining Ordinance that requires reclamation of these sites to a purposeful and acceptable landscape appearance and use. The program is administered by the Marathon County Conservation, Planning and Zoning Department and includes incentives to reclaim abandoned excavations.

Biological Resources

Vegetation �There are a significant amount of woodlands in Maine, particularly in areas adjacent to the Wisconsin River or tributary creeks. Much of the remainder of the Town is covered in cropland.

Wildlife Resources and Habitat � Wildlife resources include a variety of game and non-game species of birds, mammals, fish, reptiles and amphibians that typically live in Marathon County. Common types of wildlife include bear, badger, wolf, deer, wild turkeys, raccoon, squirrels, songbirds, waterfowl and raptors. Wildlife resources are abundant in the many undisturbed sanctuaries, refuges, reserves, and scattered habitats located throughout the County. Numerous other species of migrating birds use habitat in Marathon County for food, shelter, and resting stops during seasonal migration.

There is a significant amount of wildlife habitat in Marathon County. In addition to County parks and forest units, major wildlife habitat areas include: the George W. Mead Wildlife Area, the McMillan Marsh State Wildlife Management Area, and Rib Mountain State Park.

Threatened and Endangered Species - Both aquatic and terrestrial endangered, threatened, or special concern species are present within Maine. These include: 


� Northern Mesic Forest Community - This forest complex covered the largest acreage of any Wisconsin vegetation type prior to European settlement. Sugar maple (Acer saccharum) is dominant or co-dominant in most stands, while hemlock (Tsuga canadensis) was the second most important species, sometimes occurring in nearly pure stands with white pine (Pinus strobus). Beech (Fagus grandifolia) can be a co-dominant with sugar maple in the counties near Lake Michigan. Other important tree species were yellow birch (Betula allegheniensis), basswood (Tilia americana), and white ash (Fraxinus americana). The groundlayer varies from sparse and species poor (especially in hemlock stands) with woodferns (especially Dryopteris intermedia), bluebead lily (Clintonia borealis), clubmosses (Lycopodium spp.), and Canada mayflower (Maianthemum canadense) prevalent, to lush and species-rich with fine spring ephemeral displays. After old-growth stands were cut, trees such as quaking and bigtoothed aspens (Populus tremuloides and P. grandidentata), white birch (Betula papyrifera), and red maple (Acer rubrum) became and still are important in many second-growth Northern Mesic Forests. Several distinct associations within this complex warrant recognition as communities, and draft abstracts of these are currently undergoing review.

� Northern Sedge Meadow Community - This open wetland community is dominated by sedges and grasses. There are several common subtypes: Tussock meadows, dominated by tussock sedge (Carex stricta) and Canada bluejoint grass (Calamagrostis canadensis); Broad-leaved sedge meadows, dominated by the robust sedges (Carex lacustris and/or C. utriculata); and Wire-leaved sedge meadows, dominated by such species as woolly sedge (Carex lasiocarpa) and few-seeded sedge (C. oligosperma). Frequent associates include marsh bluegrass (Poa palustris), manna grasses (Glyceria spp.), panicled aster (Aster lanceolatus), joy-pye-weed (Eupatorium maculatum), and the bulrushes (Scirpus atrovirens and S. cyperinus).

� Fast, Soft, Cold Stream Community �This community generally consists of cold water streams that run fast and have a soft or gravelly, but not rocky bottom. These streams are well suited for trout.


� Snowy Campion (Silene nivea)
� Vasey�s Pondweed (Potamogeton vaseyi)


� Osprey (Pandion haliaetus )
� Black Redhorse (Moxostoma duquesnei)
� Skillet Clubtail (Gomphurus ventricosus)
� Cyrano Darner (Nasiaeschna pentacantha)
� Stygian Shadowfly (Neurocordulia yamaskanensis)
� Pygmy Snaketail (Ophiogomphus howei)
� Elktoe (Alasmidonta marginata)


� Farmland Preservation � Farming is central to the history and livelihood of Maine, which contains some third generation farmers. It is also intrinsically connected to the �rural atmosphere� highly valued by Town residents. Much of the land area in Maine is used for farming or agricultural purposes. While the number of dairy farms is declining, the size of some farms is increasing. However, it is recognized that mega-farms contribute to preservation of active farming in the Town. In addition, preserving �prime� farmland is important to ensure farming remains a viable part of the Town�s economy. 

� Urban Development - Loss of farmland to urban development is a major concern. The Town is interested in exploring planning strategies and tools to keep areas of active farmland from being fragmented by scattered residential development. In addition, the Town would like to ensure that new urban type development is done in a well-planned and environmentally sensitive manner.

� Protect Natural Resources � The Town contains wetlands, rivers, streams, woodlands and steep slopes that pose constraints on development and certain land uses. These features are highly valued for their environmental and scenic qualities and should be protected from negative impacts resulting from development. While the physical constraints these areas pose may reduce some demand for development, in some areas additional development controls may be needed to ensure resource protection. One unique natural area in Maine that may merit special protection on North 28th Avenue (Billy Goat Hills Road). 

4. Land Use

The Town of Maine encompasses a long band of land area located on the west side of the Wisconsin River, extending north and west of the City of Wausau to the north border of Marathon County. The Town is located on a high plateau and its rolling topography offers broad, scenic views of the surrounding countryside.

Current Pattern of Land Use

Most developed areas in Maine are concentrated around CTH K, south of CTH A, extending east toward the Wisconsin River and south toward the border with the City of Wausau. Most of the current development pressure occurs south of Hillcrest Drive, where denser development exists. Much of the north and west part of Maine remains largely agricultural with scattered low density rural housing. 

Existing Land Use - For purposes of this report, tax assessment data and land cover data from aerial photos was used to define existing land use categories. Table 4-1 describes the various land use categories and Figure 4-1 illustrates the existing land use pattern. It is noted that some of the acreage and percent of land shown on Table 4-1 were determined from aerial photos and are not intended to be accurate to the parcel level.

It is further noted that the 1995 Town of Maine Land Use Plan includes land use districts that are different from the categories in Table 4-1. The 1995 Plan includes five basic districts (conservancy, agriculture, rural residential, urban residential, business, and planned unit development), five over-lay districts (non-metallic mining, urban transition, woodlands, shoreland, and wellhead protection), and four �informational� overlays (abandoned landfill, soils unsuitable for on-site septic absorption, watersheds, and extra-territorial jurisdiction).

Table 4-1: Land Use Cover Classification, 2000
Land Cover Category Description Acres % of Land Area
Single Family Residential One family structures, farm residences, mobile homes 1,161 4.26
Multi-Family Residential Multiple family structures with three or more households, condos, duplexes, apartments 7 0.03
Commercial Services Retail stores, taverns, restaurants, truck stops, gas stations, farm coops, farm implement dealerships, automobile dealerships, business offices, motels/hotels, offices, telephone/gas company 78 0.29
Industrial Saw/paper/lumber mills, dairies, industrial parks, trucking operations, distribution centers 107 0.39
Gravel Pits Mining operations 465 1.71
Cropland Tilled agriculture, prime farmland 9,035 33.17
Specialty Crops Ginseng, orchards, vineyards, nurseries, groves, cranberries, etc. 438 1.61
Other Agriculture Fallow, pasture and undetermined agriculture, power lines and towers, water towers, municipal wells 2,355 8.64
Quasi-Public Schools, churches, cemeteries, town halls, fire departments, National Guard 19 0.07
Recreation Ball fields, golf courses, playgrounds, parks, trails, camp grounds, shooting ranges 2 0.01
Woodlands Forested land 9,190 33.73
Water and Wetlands Open waters, such as lakes, ponds, streams, rivers, creeks, reservoirs, etc. 2,287 8.39
Transportation Airports, highways, road right-of-ways, railroads, logging roads 1,214 4.46
Barren Land Unused open land in wooded areas, along streams, along roadsides 884 3.24
Total Land Area 27,242 100%
Source: Marathon County Land Use Cover and Tax Assessment Code Database

Current Land Use Plans and Regulations

Town of Maine Land Use Plan (September 1995) � The Town, with assistance from the UW-Extension Community Resource Agent and the North Central Wisconsin Regional Planning Commission (NCWRPC) staff prepared a land use plan that was adopted in September 1995. This plan includes background information, identifies issues, goals and objectives, and recommends steps the Town can take to address the issues. The plan identifies the following overall goals:

� Provide for orderly and efficient growth and development;
� Regulate development and density to minimize groundwater degradation and to preserve the �rural� atmosphere;
� Discourage �strip� type development (mostly by requiring large lot sizes) along the road network in order to insure traffic safety;
� Conserve/preserve �environmental corridors� e.g. wetlands, drainage-ways, floodplains, and severe slopes;
� Conservation of �prime� agricultural lands, including woodlands;
� Provide adequate land(s) in proper locations for residential, agricultural, and commercial land uses;
� Adopt and implement various rules, codes, and ordinances needed to achieve the plan goals;
� Cooperate and coordinate policies, plans, and programs with surrounding communities.

It is noted that the 1995 Plan has not been reviewed or updated. However, the information and recommendations in the 1995 Plan will serve as a foundation for preparation of this comprehensive plan. 

Zoning - The Town has its own zoning and subdivision ordinances, including provisions for major and minor subdivisions. The zoning code includes four preservation districts, ten development districts, and seven overlay districts. Updates to the zoning ordinance occur on an on-going basis. Figure 4-2 illustrates the existing pattern of zoning in Maine. 

Shoreland Zoning - Shoreland, shoreland wetlands, and floodplain regulations are applicable in all geographic areas of the County. Wisconsin law mandates Counties to adopt and administer a zoning ordinance that regulates land use in shoreland/wetland and floodplain areas for the entire area of the County outside of villages and cities. This ordinance supersedes any Town ordinance, unless a Town ordinance is more restrictive. The shoreland/wetland and floodplain area covered under this zoning is the area that lies within 1,000 feet of a lake and within 300 feet of a navigable stream or to the land ward side of a floodplain, whichever distance is greater.

Farmland Preservation Program � The State of Wisconsin has a Farmland Preservation Tax Credit Program. The goals of the program are twofold: to preserve Wisconsin farmland by means of local land use planning and soil conservation practices and to provide property tax relief to farmland owners. Landowners keeping land in agricultural use can claim a credit on their State income tax by obtaining a zoning certificate, if the land is zoned �exclusive agriculture� (8 towns in Marathon County), or sign a contract with the State. The program requires that a landowner be a Wisconsin resident, own a minimum of 35 or more acres of contiguous land, and produce gross farm receipts of $6,000 or more in the last year, or $18,000 in the last three years. The income requirement can be satisfied with having 35 acres or more enrolled in the Conservation Reserve Program (CRP). Landowners must also comply with County soil and water conservation standards. Contracts can range from 10 to 25 years, and remain in effect regardless of change in ownership.

As shown on Figure 4-3, a few blocks of land in the very northern part of the Town are under Farmland Preservation Contracts, which provide certain tax incentives to encourage land to be kept in active farming. 

Forest Crop Law (FCL) and Managed Forest Law (MFL) In the State, over 2.6 million acres are enrolled under the FCL and the MFL. Because high taxes had encouraged the cutting of timber for revenue, the laws were developed to encourage better forest management and provide tax relief to the woodland owners. Land set aside under the FCL (which was combined into the MFL in 1986) required at least 40 acres in one quarter-quarter section, set aside under a 25- or 50-year contract, and public access for hunting and fishing activities. Current contracts will continue until their expiration dates. This land is typically shown in plat books to identify locations. Land set aside under the FCL in Marathon County is often owned by forest products companies, although many individuals also own large enough parcels to participate.

The MFL was enacted in 1985 and requires at least 10 acres of contiguous forest land. Because of the smaller acreage requirement, many individual landowners take advantage of the MFL. Landowners may close to the public up to 80 acres of their forest lands set aside under MFL. The remaining program acres must be open to public access for hunting, fishing, hiking, sight-seeing and cross-country skiing. Landowners must choose a 25- or 50-year contract. The landowner pays an Acreage Share Amount as part of their tax bill in lieu of taxes. Current rates through 2007 are $0.83 per acre for land open to the public and $1.95 per acre for closed land.

Table 4-2 shows current estimates of land set aside under the FCL and MFL programs. It is noted that information on MFL land is not readily available since landowners select various acreage amounts and may have both closed or open land. These acreage amounts do not correspond with the parcel boundaries, and thus are not mapped. 

Table 4-2: Land in Forest Preservation Programs (in acres), 1998 � 2002

Year Forest Crop Law (FCL) Managed Forest Law
(MFL) open Managed Forest Law (MFL) closed
1998 925.5 851.2 912.5
2002 753 803.5 1,171.4
Change -172.5 -47.7 +258.9
% Change -18.6 -5.6 +28.4
Source: Data compiled by local assessors with Municipal Board of Review

Development Trends

Land Supply � Land potentially available for future development (residential and non-residential) between 2000 and 2030 was estimated by the NCWRPC based on the land cover categories shown in Table 4-1. Land categorized as barren, crop land, forest land, other agriculture, and specialty crop was considered �available� for future development. On the other hand, land categorized as already developed, such as industrial, or areas that cannot easily be developed, such as wetlands or waterways, were considered �unavailable� for future development. 

In the Town of Maine 21,900 acres are identified as �available� for future development and 5,342 are considered unavailable. It is noted that some of this �available� land may be in public ownership making it essentially �unavailable� for development, however, as shown in Table 4-3, there is virtually no public owned land in Maine.

Table 4-3: Public Owned Land (in acres), 1998-2002

Year County Owned State Owned Federal Owned
1998 12.7 0 0
2002 12.7 0 0
Change 0 0 0
% Change 0 0 0
Source: Data compiled by local assessors with Municipal Board of Review

However, with a large amount of forest land in the Town as shown above on Table 4-2, forest tax laws have a major effect on land uses. Because the tax laws require 25- to 50-year contracts they are a good indicator of the amount of land that is effectively kept from development for the near future. 

Land Demand � The 1995 Land Use Plan concludes that the Town has historically, and will likely continue to grow at a fairly slow pace. The 1995 Plan asserts that 25-30 acres of land will be developed for residential use every year. It also suggests that new commercial development will be concentrated around major road intersections, but does not estimate how much land will be developed annually. The plan identifies significant growth constraints in the Town due to environmental features, particularly the presence of soils unsuited for on-site septic systems, which exist throughout the Town.

An estimate of land needed for future residential development was based on projected new dwelling units between 2000 and 2030 derived from WDOA household projections and the average density of dwelling units per acre in the community. The average density was calculated using the total acres of residential land on the 2000 land use/cover map divided by the number of households according to the 2000 Census. It was assumed that the density would remain constant between 2000 and 2030. Future acres needed for residential development were then estimated by multiplying the projected number of households in 2030 by the average density. In the Town of Maine, it is estimated that 299 acres of land will be needed to accommodate new residential development through 2030. 

It is also noted between 1990 and 2002, 248 sanitary permits for residential development were approved in the Town of Maine. This represents an average of almost 21 new homes constructed each year. At a density of 2.01 units per acre, assuming the number of new homes constructed each year remains fairly consistent, about 300 acres would be need to meet demand through 2030, or about 42 acres per year. This is consistent with the WDOA projections, but slightly higher than the estimate in the 1995 Plan.

The NCWRPC estimated land demand for future non-residential development based on projected changes in local employment and an estimated current average density of 8.20 employees per acre in the Highway 51 planning sub-area. In the Town of Maine, it is estimated that 47 acres will be needed to accommodate new non-residential development through 2030. 

If the LRTP projections are used and the current average sub-area density of 8.20 employees per acre is applied, 34 acres are estimated to be needed to accommodate non-residential development through 2030.

Land Values -- Table 4-4 indicates the change in assessed land values between 1998 and 2002 for various types of land use in Maine. It also indicates percent change in land value for the Town compared to Marathon County. Between 1998 and 2002 the assessed value of most types of land decreased slightly. Land classified as Agricultural decreased the most, declining almost 55 percent and Residential land values decreased slightly, by almost 3 percent. At the same time the value of land classified as Swamp & Waste Land increased by 100 percent. This likely reflects changes made in the assessment rate and classification of land from Agriculture to Swamp & Waste. 

In Marathon County, land classified as Swamp & Waste Land had the highest percent increase in acreage of all categories (74.8%) and value (137%). This was followed by land classified as Forest, which experienced an increase in value per acre of almost 92 percent.

Table 4-4: Per Acre Assessed Land Values (in dollars), 1998 � 2002

Year Residential Commercial Manufacturing Agriculture Swamp & Waste Land Forest
Acres Land
Only Acres Land
Only Acres Land
Only Acres Land Only Acres Land Only Acres Land Only
1998 2,367 $3,600 229 $5,890 1,134 $729 13,014 $353 62 $100 6,281 $612
2002 2,642 $3,500 252 $5,014 1,133 $777 12,397 $160 65 $200 6,313 $606
Change +275 $-100 +23 $-876 -1 $48 -617 $-193 3 $100 +32 $-6
Percent Change Comparison
Acres Land ($) Acres Land ($) Acres Land ($) Acres Land ($) Acres Land ($) Acres Land ($)
Maine +11.6 -2.8 +10.0 -14.9 -0.1 +6.6 -4.7 -54.7 +4.8 +100.0 +0.5 -1.0
County +21.2 +5.6 +38.4 -4.0 -0.5 +34.4 -11.2 -47.6 +74.8 +137.0 +1.0 +91.8
Source: Data compiled by local assessors with Municipal Board of Review

Major Opportunities and Constraints

� Soil Conditions and Hilly Terrain � A significant amount of land in the Town of Maine has soils with severe limitations for on-site septic systems, mostly because of clay or high bedrock. This can present a major obstacle to development, making it more expensive and increases risks of water contamination. As a result, mound-type septic systems are commonly used in the Town. Likewise, the topographic in the Town is fairly hilly, particularly along the Wisconsin River valley. Steep slopes make development more complicated and costly and are vulnerable to erosion, particularly during construction.

� Annexation � The Town shares borders with the City of Wausau and the Village of Brokaw, both of which can annex land from the Town if petitioned by property owners. When land is annexed, a town typically loses population and tax base in addition to land area. The constant threat of annexation can also create a disincentive to invest in planning or provision of services to areas vulnerable to annexation. 

� New Wisconsin River Crossing � Creating a crossing on the Wisconsin River in the northern portion of the Wausau metropolitan area is currently being studied, although would not likely occur for at least 10 years. One possible alignment under consideration is Decator Drive, although it is considered a long-term possibility and not definite. Improving the existing crossing at CTH WW in Brokaw is another option. If a new river crossing is built, the resulting improved access to adjacent land areas could increase development pressure in the surrounding area.

� 28th Avenue Improvements - Upgrades are being considered for 28th Avenue that would make it a major north-south corridor through Maine. Current long-range concepts include a crossing on the Big Rib River to extend the road into the Town of Rib Mountain, connecting to the proposed �west arterial� that would parallel I-39/US 51. Improvements to 28th Avenue would include expansion to 4-lanes from the south border of Maine north to at least Decator Drive, making this a major thoroughfare. Road upgrades will likely increase development pressure along this corridor, particularly if it is extended south across the Rib River.

Major Issues

� Farm/Non-Farm Conflicts � While the number of dairy farms continues to decrease, the size of some farms has increased greatly. At the same time, close and easy access to the City of Wausau has increased demand for new �rural� housing. As more housing is developed near farms, the potential for conflicts between farmers and non-farm residents increases. Likewise, some farmers sell their homes to non-farmers but retain the surrounding farmland to rent out and keep in agricultural production. The majority of conflicts involve concerns about farm equipment impacts on road maintenance and traffic, noise, dust and smells associated with farm practices, and the cost of providing more urban services for new residents.

� Retaining Active Farming � In order to keep land in active farming, some retiring farmers lease their land to others to farm. This is particularly common around larger farms, such as the Van Der Geest farm. Custom or niche farming practices that complement operations on other farms is becoming more common as a means to maintain the viability of smaller farms.

� Urban Sprawl and Strip Development � Existing scattered and haphazard development is largely due to annexation of sufficient enforcement of existing regulations. Most strip type development occurs along the County Highways (e.g., K and WW). The Town has concerns about the type and character of this development, as past experience has shown that it creates irregular borders, incompatible land use, inefficient government services, including servicing of Town roads, and at times, has created unsafe residential neighborhoods. 

� Annexation � Most annexations to the City of Wausau have, and will likely continue to occur in the southeast corner of Maine around the interchange of US 51 and CTH K. The Village of Brokaw also recently annexed land from the Town around the intersection of CTH WW and North 32nd Street. The 1995 Land Use Plan states that the Town may consider entering into agreements with the City of Wausau and possibly the Village of Brokaw to guide development in border areas. The 1995 Plan also suggests establishing an �urban growth zone� that encompasses border areas, within which future annexations would not be contested by the Town. 

� Incentives - To counteract loss of land and population through annexation, the Town is interested in exploring strategies to create incentives to encourage residents and businesses to remain in the Town. These might include focusing on quality of life and other assets the Town can offer. 

5. Transportation

The transportation system in a community consists of a variety of roads; some are owned and maintained by local officials, others are part of the County or State road systems. In addition to roads, the transportation system consists of facilities for pedestrians (e.g., sidewalks), bicyclists (e.g., trails), railroads, airports, and in more urban areas, public transit. This section describes the transportation system in the Town of Maine and related improvements or issues affecting the system.


In general, the transportation system in the Town of Maine functions well and is in good shape. A community survey distributed by the Town in 1993 indicated that 18 percent of the 394 responses rated roads in the Town as poor, 21 percent rated them as fair, 32 percent as average, 24 percent as good and four percent as excellent. Traffic enforcement and speeding were identified as concerns. While the Town considers their local roads to be a community strength, they have had difficulty maintaining them. Road development is also an on-going issue and planning for new roads has been identified as a priority. The Town provides snowplowing service on local roads, but not for private driveways. The Town also provides some maintenance and snowplowing service to the Village of Brokaw.

Anticipated major changes in the transportation system include a four-lane belt-line that is planned around the western edge of the metropolitan area. The proposed alignment would be near 28th Avenue and would essentially parallel I-39/51 from Maine south through Rib Mountain. This would require crossing the Rib River, which is considered a long-term, and challenging prospect. However, portions north and south of the Rib River could be developed prior to and exclusive of a river crossing. 

A new Wisconsin River crossing is also being considered somewhere between CTH WW and the Bridge Street crossing in Wausau. One location being discussed is on the alignment of Decator Drive. Depending on the final location, this new �north metro� Wisconsin River crossing could also impact the Town of Texas on the east side of the river.

Existing Transportation Planning Efforts

Transportation planning in Marathon County is coordinated between Marathon County Planning Department staff and the Marathon County Metropolitan Planning Commission; the Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO) designated by the Federal Department of Transportation to be responsible for transportation planning in the Wausau area. Marathon County provides staff for the MPO. The County also does transportation planning for areas outside the Wausau metropolitan area.

County transportation planning efforts are presented in various plans and studies. Findings and recommendations presented in these plans should be integrated into local community planning efforts when relevant and appropriate. Recent transportation plans prepared by Marathon County include:

� Transportation Improvement Program (TIP) � The TIP includes all programmed transportation projects receiving Federal and/or State funds. The TIP for 2003-2005 was adopted in October 2002 and is updated every two years.

� STH 29 Corridor Land Use Review (1997) � This plan was prepared by a multi-departmental team working with communities along the STH 29 corridor in the western part of Marathon County. The primary goal was to identify recommendations to allow local communities to protect STH 29 from impacts related to unplanned growth. 

� Marathon County Functional / Jurisdictional Highway Classification Study (1998) � This plan identifies and groups classes of roadways that provide similar levels of service. The plan recommended that the unit of government having the greatest basic interest in the roadway�s function would carry out the operation, maintenance, and improvement of the classified roadways.

The Wausau Area MPO in conjunction with the Marathon County Department of Conservation, Planning and Zoning (DCPZ) have developed the following transportation plans for the Wausau metropolitan area:

� Long Range Transportation Plan for the Wausau Metropolitan Area (1996) � This plan was produced by Barton-Aschman Associates, Inc. for the MPO. This plan considers the transportation system and its relationship to land use. The plan was reaffirmed in 2001 and is currently being updated by URS Corporation. The new plan is anticipated to be adopted in spring 2006.

� Local Arterial Circulation Plan (2000) � This plan was produced by the Marathon County Planning and Highway Departments for the MPO. This plan is intended to guide public and private sector decisions concerning improvements to the local arterial transportation system over the next two to three decades.

� Transit System Management Performance Audit Wausau Area Transit System (WATS) (2001) � The Wisconsin Department of Transportation (WDOT) is required by statute to conduct a management performance review of all urban transit systems receiving State aid. Performance reviews are conducted at least once every five years. Abrams-Cherwony & Associates.

� Wausau Area Transit System Transit Development Plan (TDP) (1999) � The TDP was prepared by Abrams-Cherwony & Associates with Urbitran Associates. It is updated every five years and provides a five-year capital improvement program and service recommendation plan.

� Marathon County Paratransit Study (2001) � The study, prepared by Urbitran Associates, Inc. with Abrams-Cherwony & Associates, reviewed paratransit services within the Wausau area provided primarily by Wausau Area Transit System Plus (WATS+).

Road Network

Functional Classification of Roads/Jurisdiction 
(Source: WDOT Facilities Development Manual) 

Functional Classification � A functionally classified road system is one in which streets and highways are grouped into classes according to the character of service they provide, ranging from a high degree of travel mobility to land access functions. At the upper limit of the system (principal arterials, for example), are those facilities that emphasize traffic mobility (long, uninterrupted travel), whereas at the lower limits are those local roads and streets that emphasize access.

The functional classifications are generally defined as:

Principal Arterials serve corridor movements having trip length and travel density characteristics of an interstate or interregional nature. These routes generally serve all urban areas with populations greater than 5,000 or connect major centers of activity. They carry the highest traffic volumes and are designed to accommodate longer trips.

Minor Arterials, like principal arterials, minor arterials also serve cities, large communities, and other major traffic generators providing intra-community continuity and service for trips of moderate length, with more emphasis on land access than principal arterials. 

Collectors provide both land access service and traffic circulation within residential neighborhoods, commercial areas, and industrial areas. The collector system distributes trips from the arterials through the area to the local streets. The collectors also collect traffic from the local streets and channel it onto the arterial system. 

Local Streets comprise all facilities not on one of the higher systems. They serve primarily to provide direct access to abutting land and access to higher order systems. Local streets offer the lowest level of mobility, and through-traffic movement on these streets is usually discouraged.

Jurisdiction � Roads are commonly classified in one of two ways: by ownership or by purpose. Jurisdictional responsibility refers to ownership of a particular road, while functional classification, as describe above, identifies the road by the level of service (LOS) it provides. 

Jurisdiction refers to governmental ownership, not necessarily responsibility. For example, some State owned roads are maintained by local jurisdictions. Additionally, the designation of a public road as a �Federal-aid highway� does not alter its ownership or jurisdiction as a State or local road, only that its service value and importance have made that road eligible for Federal-aid construction and rehabilitation funds. 

Ownership is divided among the Federal, State, and local governments. States own over 20 percent of the national road network. The Federal Government has responsibility for about five percent, primarily in national parks, forests, and Indian reservations. Over 75 percent of the road system is locally controlled.

In some cases, local municipalities are responsible for conducting routine maintenance and minor repairs on State and Federal highways within their jurisdictional boundaries. In return, the State generally provides financing to those jurisdictions. However, major repairs and reconstruction are generally still the responsibility of the State Department of Transportation. Roadway jurisdictions (i.e. U.S., State, and County highways) are indicated in Figure 5-1.

Major Road Facilities

Following is a brief description of the major road facilities located in the Town. Functional classification, jurisdiction, and Annual Average Daily Traffic (AADT), when available, are summarized for all major roads.

� US 51, a principal arterial and the County�s only major north-south freeway, provides convenient access between the Town of Maine and the Wausau metropolitan area to the south. It also provides access to Merrill and other northern destinations. Freeway access is seen as a Town asset. The 1999 AADT volume on US 51 was 19,700 between of the CTH WW interchange and CTH K interchange and 22,700 in 2001, a 15 percent increase. North of the CTH WW interchange, the 1998 AADT volume was 17,400 and 19,740 in 2001, a 13 percent increase. In 2001, 1,800 vehicles per day (vpd) entered the freeway heading south with 2,000 vpd exiting from the south. The same year an average of 450 vpd entered the freeway heading north and 380 vpd exited from the north. 

� CTH K is a major collector road that runs north and south through Maine. CTH K terminates at US 51 and becomes Business 51 (Merrill Avenue) east of the freeway in Wausau. The AADT increased from 6,600 in 1999 to 8,300 in 2001 just west of US 51, a 26 percent increase. North of N. Lane Drive, the AADT volume in 1998 was 5,700 and 7,000 in 2001. South of Maine Drive the AADT volume on CTH K was 3,800 in 1998 and 6,400 in 2001. North of CTH F, CTH K had and AADT volume of 3,500 in 1998 and 6,100 in 2001. CTH K traffic increases between 1998 and 2001 range between 1,300 and 2,600 vehicles per day, which are significant increases. Given that this route is major collector, it is likely that this traffic is generated within or near the Town of Maine.

� CTH U is an east-west major collector that had an AADT volume that more than doubled east of CTH K between 1998 and 2001 from 2,800 to 6,400. This increase in traffic likely do to local traffic generated from within the Town or from nearby communities.

� CTH WW is an east-west major collector east of CTH K that had an AADT volume of 1,000 in 1998 and 2,100 in 2001.

� CTH A is an east-west major collector that had an AADT volume west of CTH K of 1,900 in 1998 and 2,000 in 2001.
� CTH F is an east-west major collector, had an AADT volume west of CTH K of 670 in 1998 and 720 in 2001.

� 28th Avenue is a north-south route primarily serving local traffic. There are discussions underway about widening this road south of Decatur Drive to form a 4-lane arterial roadway.

� Falcon Drive is a major east-west route through the Town. Between N. 32nd Avenue and the west border of Maine, Falcon Drive is classified as a minor collector.

� Rainbow Drive east of CTH K and Brandenburg Avenue north of Rainbow Drive are classified as minor collectors. 

� Woodland Avenue and N. 32nd Avenue are also classified as minor arterials.

Road Maintenance 

A 1993 community survey found general satisfaction with the road system in the Town. Traffic enforcement and speeding were identified as concerns. While the Town considers their local roads to be a community asset, keeping up with and funding needed maintenance is a continuing challenge. In particular, impacts from heavy farm equipment driving on roads and shoulders can greatly increase damage and the need for more frequent maintenance. The Town uses the Pavement Surface Evaluation Rating (PASER) program (see below) and reviews traffic volumes in prioritizing road maintenance. The Town is interested in developing a 2-3 year capital improvement program for road improvements. The Town does not currently have an established a funding program for on-going road maintenance.

The Town provides snowplowing service on local roads, but not for private driveways. Maine also provides some maintenance and snowplowing service to the Village of Brokaw.

Road development is also an on-going issue for the Town and planning for new roads has been identified as a priority. There are about 87 miles of Town roads of which about 18-20 miles are gravel. 

Pavement Surface Evaluation Rating (PASER) � The Wisconsin Department of Transportation (WDOT) requires all incorporated communities to prepare a Pavement Management Plan (PMP) using a pavement rating system for their local roads. These plans were to be submitted for review by December 2001. The data from these plans is intended to provide the foundation for the Wisconsin Information System for Local Roads (WISLR), which is a computer resource that will enable communities and the State to begin to assess Wisconsin�s local roadway system.

The PASER system, which was designed by the Transportation Information Center of the University of Wisconsin-Madison, is the rating system used most by Wisconsin communities. PASER rates road surfaces on a scale of 1 to 10. This scale is broken down as follows: 

� �1� and �2� = very poor condition
� �3� = poor condition
� �4� and �5� = fair condition
� �6� and �7� = good condition
� �8� = very good condition
� �9� and �10� = excellent condition

In addition to its use in the new WISLR, the rating system gives communities a detailed assessment of the appropriate maintenance method for each road segment under their jurisdiction. This assessment is then incorporated into the community�s PMP.

Figures 5-2 and 5-3 and Table 5-1 below illustrate the WISLR road assessment done in 2004 by surface type and condition rating. As shown, the majority of roads in the Town are paved with either asphalt or concrete. Roads exhibiting a surface condition rating at or below �Fair� should be examined to determine what type of reconstruction or strengthening is necessary. Roads that display a surface rating of �Good� or better will only require minimal preventative maintenance to maintain safe travel conditions. Those roads without data should be examined to ensure safe travel conditions exist along these routes. About 60 percent of the roads in the Town are rated in �Good� or better condition and will require only preventative maintenance. However, roughly 31-miles of roadways will require some sort of reconstruction.

Table 5-1: Summary of Pavement Conditions (miles)
Surface Type Code 
Unimproved Road Graded Earth Road Gravel Road Wearing Surface Cold Mix Asphalt on Concrete Cold Mix Resurfacing with < 7" Base Cold Mix Resurfacing with > 7" Base
17.29 2.38 0.49

Cold Mix Asphalt Base < 7" Cold Mix Asphalt Base > 7" Hot Mix Asphalt on Concrete Hot Mix Resurfacing Hot Mix Asphalt Pavement Concrete Pavement Brick or Block Pavement
16.39 24.61 2.35 27.01 0.82

Surface Condition Rating 
No Data Failed Poor Fair Good Very Good Excellent
1.36 11.68 18.39 26.3 13.89 19.72
Source: WDOT (WISLR), 8/10/04

Land Use and Transportation

Land use and transportation have a reciprocal relationship. Land use affects the demand for transportation to and from a given geographic area. Likewise, improved transportation facilities can affect land use decisions.

Trip Patterns � The more densely developed areas of Maine are located south of Hillcrest Drive, while agricultural areas are predominant in the north. Information on employment suggests that many residents commute to jobs in the Wausau metro area. CTH K, CTH U, and 28th Avenue are major routes into the City. CTH WW provides access to US 51 and the Village of Brokaw. It is also the only river crossing north of Wausau. Current commercial development is somewhat scattered through the Town, but most is located along CTH K, U or WW. Large dairy farms and feedlots can create significant amount of farm related traffic. Such traffic leaves mud on roads although State law requires farmers to scrap roads. Safety issues related to farm equipment on roads have been identified as a concern.

Access Management � Wisconsin was one of the first states to recognize the relationship between highway operations and the use of abutting lands. Under Chapter 233, the WDOT was given the authority to establish rules to review subdivision plats abutting or adjoining State trunk highways or connecting highways. Regulations enacted by WDOT establish the principles of subdivision review. They require new subdivisions to: (1) have internal street systems; (2) limit direct vehicular access to the highways from individual lots; (3) establish building setbacks; and (4) establish access patterns for remaining unplatted land.

Marathon County issues driveway permits and implements access restrictions on all properties fronting a lettered County road. The County Trunk Highway Access-Driveway Policy addresses the requirements regarding culverts, access width, slope, visibility and spacing. The policy is available through the Marathon County Highway Department. 

Other Transportation Modes

Pedestrian � There are no public sidewalks in Maine. Pedestrians walk along road shoulders.

Bicycle � The 1996 Bicycle & Pedestrian Plan for the Non-Urbanized Area of Marathon County, Wisconsin, identified suggested bicycle routes in Marathon County. These routes were based on traffic counts and condition of pavement. Formal action has not occurred to adopt these as designated bicycle routes. The Plan recommends a potential bike route through the Town of Maine as follows: 

� N. 60th Avenue to Hillcrest Drive, to N. 52nd Avenue to Falcon Avenue to N. 44th Avenue to Decator Drive to Merrill Avenue. 

Other existing and/or recommended trails are shown on Figure 5-4.

Transit � There is no general transit service in the Town of Maine. Elderly, needy, and disabled transit service is provided throughout the County through North Central Health Care (NCHC). The services include semi-fixed routes that are scheduled, and demand services available with a 48-hour notice. Information and services are available by calling 848-4555.

Airports � Area airports are described below and shown on Figure 5-5.

� Central Wisconsin Airport (CWA) � The CWA is a joint venture of Marathon and Portage Counties. It is the only airport within Marathon County or neighboring counties that provides scheduled air passenger services. The CWA is located east of Mosinee and accessible via I-39. 

The terminal has been modernized and highway access reconstructed to be more convenient. Since 1982 more than $24,000,000 has been spent to keep the airport ready to serve the needs of the region. Service is provided through Mesaba/Northwest, United/United Feeder Service and Skyway/Midwest Express, offering 24 flights per day that connect through Minneapolis, Chicago, Detroit and Milwaukee. There are also nine air freight and express flights daily.

� Wausau Municipal Airport � The Wausau Municipal Airport, located in the City of Wausau, provides general aviation services and is fully equipped to receive large corporate jets, charters, and privately owned aircraft. The Wausau Municipal Airport's two paved runways and instrument approaches make it a viable facility even when weather conditions are marginal. Air charter, flight instruction, aircraft rental, scenic rides, as well as aviation line services such as refueling, transportation, lodging and catering are some of the services available. 


� Farm Equipment Impacts � Keeping up with road maintenance can be difficult in areas subject to frequent use by farm equipment. The heavy equipment can damage road surfaces and shoulders. In addition, some equipment is too large to pass on older, narrow bridges. If bridges cannot be widened, longer, roundabout routes may be taken to get equipment between barns and fields. This in turn, subjects more roads to farm equipment damage. The Town would like to explore strategies to prolong the life of roads that receive high volumes of farm equipment use. For example, increasing pavement depth to accommodate heavier equipment on certain roads. 

� Proactive Road Planning � The Town plans for roads in conjunction with subdivision and platting. Taking a proactive approach to planning for new roads is a continuing priority.

� New Wisconsin River Crossing � Creating a river crossing in the northern portion of the Wausau metropolitan area is currently being studied. One possible alignment under consideration is Decator Drive, which would connect with Evergreen Drive on the east side of the river in the Town of Texas. Improving the existing crossing at CTH WW in Brokaw is another option. If a new river crossing is built, the resulting improved access to adjacent land areas could increase development pressure in those areas.

� 28th Avenue Improvements � Upgrades are being considered for 28th Avenue that would make it a major north-south corridor through the Town and potentially extending south into Rib Mountain, crossing the Rib River, to become part of a �western arterial� around the metro area. Improvements would likely extend north to Decator Drive, particularly if a river crossing is built on that alignment. Road upgrades will likely increase development pressure along this road corridor.

� Speeding � There is a concern regarding speeding in the Town, in particular along N 28th and N 32nd Avenues and some County roads. The Town posts speed limits in all subdivisions at 25 M.P.H., but would like a study done on other Town roads. It is recognized that posted speeds are simply �recommended� and enforcement of speed limits is an on-going challenge.

� Hazardous Intersections � High speeds and blind spots at some intersections are a particular concern. The intersection of CTH WW and CTH K is a concern to residents, especially during rush hour.

� Funding Improvements � Increasing development, particularly in the south and east parts of the Town, has generated some concerns about increased traffic congestion and the Town�s ability to keep up with and fund infrastructure improvements. The Town does not have a dedicated source of funding for on-going road improvements and/or maintenance (e.g., assessments or taxes). The Town is also interested in establishing a 2-3 year capital improvement program to prioritize and allocate funding for needed road improvements. 

� Brokaw Development � The Town has concerns about traffic impacts of new development in the Village of Brokaw in the vicinity of CTH WW, Falcon Drive and 32nd Avenue. The Town would like to see a traffic flow plan done for the entire area extending west to CTH K.

6. Utilities 

This section describes the existing conditions and issues relative to utilities available to the Town of Maine, including sewage disposal, water supply, power supply, and telecommunication facilities and services. It also describes existing conditions with regard to surface water management.

Private Utilities

The Town of Maine does not provide public sewer or water service. All development is on private wells and septic systems. The Town, which has its own zoning, requires a minimum lot size of 3-acres for installation of individual septic systems and wells. Smaller lots are allowed in cluster subdivisions, on a case-specific basis, with appropriate waste disposal systems. 

It is noted that portions of the southeast part of Maine are within the 208 Sewer Service Area defined in the Wausau Urban Area Sewer Service Plan for the Year 2000 and subsequent amendments. Thus, as shown on Figure 6-1, some portions of Maine are identified as areas where public sewer service may be extended. However, the City of Wausau has a current policy to not extend sewer service without annexation. Therefore, when and if sewer service is provided, the Town is seeking intergovernmental cooperation for joint planning and joint decision-making for shared public services to landowners within the Town as provided under Section 66.1001(2)(g). 

Likewise, the Village of Brokaw recently annexed about 100 acres along the east edge of the Town to accommodate its expansion. Public sewer and water were extended from across the Wisconsin River to serve that area. Brokaw, like Wausau typically does not currently provide public utilities without annexation. Therefore, when and if sewer service is provided to landowners within the Town, the Town would seek intergovernmental cooperation for joint planning and joint decision-making for shared public services under Section 66.1001(2)(g). 

On-Site Waste Disposal Systems 

All development in Maine uses on-site septic systems. The presence of clay soils and bedrock can create problems for the installation of convention type septic systems. Figure 6-2 illustrates average depth to bedrock and Figure 6-3 illustrates soils suitable for conventional septic systems.

Chapter 15 of the General Code of Ordinances for Marathon County requires private sewage systems on all premises intended for human habitation or occupancy that are not served by public sewer. The County Code incorporates by reference rules, regulations, and laws in the Wisconsin Statutes and Wisconsin Administrative Code governing private sewage systems, including:

� Comm 83 � This refers to Chapter 83 in the Wisconsin Administrative Code under the Department of Commerce. It sets standards for regulation of private sewage systems. This code was updated in 2000 and now allows the use of new concepts and technologies through a system of individual component approval. Standards for effluent are based on a drinking water standard, although nitrates are generally exempted. 

Types of Systems � Under the revised Comm 83 standards, property owners have a wider array of system options than previously available. Septic tanks can be steel, concrete, fiberglass or plastic, but they all must now be equipped with a filter to prevent the movement of solids out into the soil absorption component. In addition, rock in drain fields may now be substituted with specifically engineered foam peanuts bound in mesh or plastic chambers. In the event a Comm 83 system cannot be utilized by a landowner in the Town, and the landowner seeks municipal water or sewer services, the Town would exercise the intergovernmental cooperation for joint planning and joint decision-making for shared public services, as provided under Section 66.1001(2)(g). 

On-site waste disposal systems generally fall into four categories:

� Conventional Systems � these systems include an absorption field that is buried under the natural ground level. These systems cannot be built in areas where soils do not allow percolation due to high clay content or bedrock where groundwater is too near the surface, or where soils percolate too rapidly and thus pose problems for groundwater contamination.

� Mound Systems � these systems include an absorption field that is constructed above ground, creating a �mound�. This type of system is generally used where clay soils, groundwater, rapid permeability or bedrock prevent construction of conventional systems.

� Mechanical Treatment Components � these generally replace or augment the septic tank component and may include aerobic treatment tanks and/or self -contained artificial media or sand filters to clean the effluent prior to its discharge into the soil absorption component.

� Holding Tanks - Holding tanks are considered the system of last resort and are only allowed if other types of septic systems cannot be used. Temporary holding tanks (e.g., less than 2 years) are sometimes allowed in areas where public sewer is approved for installation in the near future.

Permit Requirements � The Marathon County Department of Conservation, Planning and Zoning (DCPZ) reviews and issues permits for private sewage systems. Soil and site evaluations are required to determine if the proposed septic system is suitable for the specific property and location before a permit will be issued. If deemed necessary, floodplain and/or wetland delineation may also be required prior to permit issuance. In addition, a maintenance agreement must be submitted prior to permit issuance. All septic tanks installed on or after July 1, 1980, are required to be pumped at least once every three years.

Water Supply

All development in Maine receives water from private wells. Because of bedrock (see Figure 6-2), water for private wells can be difficult to find in some area and some wells must be very deep. This can greatly increase the cost of development.
Surface Water Management 

In 2001, Marathon County adopted a Land and Water Resource Management Plan (LWRMP) in accordance with Wisconsin Statutes (Wisconsin Act 27, Chapter 92.10). The primary intent of this plan is to identify a vision for natural resource management in Marathon County and outline strategies to protect the quality and quantity of soil and water resources. 

The County is particularly concerned about non-point sources of pollution, including failing septic systems, urban runoff, and issues often identified with rural areas such as soil erosion, animal waste and pesticides. Non-point pollution is best addressed by watershed. Marathon County encompasses portions of 22 watersheds as shown on Figure 6-4. The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (WDNR) has ranked these watersheds according to water pollution impacts and designated five as �priority� watersheds to receive special planning and funding through the voluntary, State-funded Priority Watershed Program. Preparation of resource management plans for the following watersheds is currently underway:

� Springbrook in the Town of Harrison; 
� Upper Yellow River in the Town of Spencer; 
� Upper Big Eau Pleine in western Marathon County; and 
� Lower Big Eau Pleine in the south-central part of the County.
� Lower Big Rib River

Electrical and Gas Utilities
The Town of Maine receives electric power from Wisconsin Public Service Corporation (WPS). A substation is located on CTH WW just west of the Wisconsin River. WPS also provides gas service to some areas south of CTH A. Otherwise, private property owners use LP gas.

Telecommunication Facilities and Services 

� Television/Cable providers � Charter Communications; cable is only available in limited areas.
� Telephone/Fiber Optics - Verizon
� Cell towers � One near Brandenberg Ave. Also one in Brokaw

Solid Waste Management 

The Town of Maine contracts with a private company for waste management and bills property owners for the service. Trash pick-up currently is provided on a weekly basis. Municipal, commercial and industrial waste is accepted at the Marathon County Landfill in Ringle. User fees collected at the landfill defray the cost of landfill operations.

The Marathon County Solid Waste Management Department is in charge of waste management for non-hazardous solid waste. It consists of the 575-acre landfill, recycling programs, composting, and waste-to-energy. The Department opened a Household Hazardous Waste Collection Facility in May 1997, where County residents can drop off hazardous waste free of charge. 

Recycling pick-up is contemporaneous with Solid Waste Management pick-up on a weekly basis. 


� Bedrock and Clay Soils � The presence of high bedrock and clay soils poses constraints on installation of wells and conventional septic systems. This limits where development can go and can make development significantly more expensive.

� Provision of Utilities � The Town is interested in creating a sanitary district to provide public sewer to the area around the intersection of CTH K and CTH WW. This would involve working cooperatively with the Village of Brokaw to allow the Town to use the Village waste water treatment facility without annexation of land into the Village.

7. Housing

Housing is a significant aspect of any comprehensive planning effort. This section describes existing housing conditions in the Town of Maine. Housing in the Town is predominantly single family, with over 90 percent owner-occupied. Almost 20 percent of housing units were constructed during the last decade, and housing values are higher than median values for Marathon County as a whole.

Data contained in this section reflect two methodologies of data collection employed by the U.S. Census. The source of data collected for the first table is from 2000 Census, Summary Tape File (STF)-1 Data, which was collected through a household-by-household census and represents responses from every household within the country. To get more detailed information, the U.S. Census also randomly distributes a long-form questionnaire to 1 in 6 households throughout the nation. Tables utilizing this sample data are identified in the footnote below each table and are labeled �STF-3 Data�. It should be noted that STF-1 and STF-3 data may differ for similar statistics, due to survey limitations, non-response, or other attributes unique to each form of data collection.

Housing Inventory

The following information provides a summary overview of the type, character and conditions of the housing stock in the Town of Maine.

Housing Type and Tenure 

As shown in Table 7-1, the Town of Maine had 842 occupied housing units in 2000 and the majority of these units (90%) are owner-occupied. The Town has an average household size of 2.86 persons, which is slightly larger than the County or State. Only 11 percent of all households are classified as being �1 person households� and slightly less than one quarter (21%) of all households have a householder 65 years or older.

Table 7-1: Number of Housing Units by Type and Tenure 
Area Maine Marathon County Wisconsin
Total Occupied Housing Units 842 47,702 2,084,544
Owner Occupied Units 754 36,091 1,426,361
Renter Occupied Units 88 11,611 658,183
Average Household Size 2.86 2.6 2.50
% Owner Occupied 89.5 75.7 68.4
% 1 Person Households 10.8 23.6 26.8
% With Householder 65 years or older 20.7 21.7 21.5
Source: 2000 Census: STF-1 Data

Changes in Housing Stock 

Table 7-2 notes changes in the housing stock between 1990 and 2000 according to U.S. Census data. Total housing units increased by 146 (20%) while the number of occupied housing units rose by 131 (18%). The number of owner-occupied housing units increased by 125 (20%). The census reports increases in the number of single-family units while duplex and some multifamily units decreased in number. This reflects the increase in demand for rural residential housing in Maine.
Table 7-2: Changes in Housing Stock
1990 2000 # Change % 
Total Housing Units 736 882 146 20%
Occupied Housing Units (Households) 719 850 131 18%
Vacancy % 2% 4% -- --
Owner Occupied Housing Units 640 765 125 20%
Renter Occupied Housing Units 79 85 6 8%
Owner Occupied Housing Units as percent of Total 89% 90% -- --
Number of Homes for Seasonal/Rec Use 4 7 3 75%
Number of Single Family Homes 696 857 161 23%
*Detached 696 855 159 23%
**Attached 0 2 2 --
Number of Duplexes 28 21 -7 -25%
Multi Family Units 3-9 units 4 0 -4 -100%
Multi Family Units 10+ 0 0 0 --
Source: U.S. Census: 1990, 2000 STF-3 Data
* This is a 1-unit structure detached from any other house
**In row houses (sometimes called townhouses), double houses, or houses attached to nonresidential structures, each house is a separate, attached structure if the dividing or common wall goes from ground to roof.

Housing Age 

The age of a community�s housing stock typically reflects several important factors including size, offered amenities, and overall maintenance costs. Age of the home often also reflects different regional and national trends in housing development. Housing predating the 1940s, for example, was typically smaller and built on smaller lots. In subsequent decades, both average lot and home sizes have increased. For example, average homes constructed in the 1980s and 1990s are typically much larger than housing built in previous decades. This can be seen in both the rural and more urban environments of Marathon County. Additional bedrooms, bathrooms, and attached garage space are among the amenities found in newer housing units. 

Table 7-3: Age of Community Housing Stock 
Total Units Year Built
1999 to March 2000 1995 to 1998 1990 to 1994 1980 to 1989 1970 to 1979 1960 to 1969 1950 to 1959 1940 to 1949 1939 or earlier
882 32 80 35 87 252 102 90 39 165
100% 4% 9% 4% 10% 29% 12% 10% 4% 19%
Source: U.S. Census: 1990, 2000 STF-3 Data

Table 7-3 shows housing age distribution in Maine and indicates that housing growth has been fairly stable over the past several decades. Housing growth since 1990 makes up approximately 17 percent of the total housing stock. That is slightly higher than overall percentages for the County, where, according to Census data, homes built in the 1990s make up 13 percent of the County�s overall housing stock. It is also noted that several newer homes in the southern part of Maine were annexed into the City of Wausau during the 1990s.
Physical Housing Stock 

Table 7-4 looks at several select measures of physical condition and compares them to figures for Marathon County and Wisconsin. The median home size in the Town of Maine is larger in size when compared to the overall figures for the County and State, as measured by number of rooms. Over 97 percent of Maine�s housing stock is classified as a single family home. This is significantly higher than the overall figures for the County or State, with 76 percent and 69 percent, respectively. At the time of the 2000 census, no housing units in Maine were within structures with more than 10 units. Census data indicates that the Town has a small percentage of homes lacking complete plumbing and kitchen facilities.

Table 7-4: Physical Housing Stock

Median Rooms Characteristic (%)
1 unit, detached or attached In buildings with 10 or more Units Lacking complete plumbing facilities Lacking complete kitchen facilities
Maine 6.5 97.17% 0.00% 0.34% 0.34%
Marathon County 5.8 76.10% 4.50% 0.90% 0.90%
Wisconsin 5.4 69.30% 9.40% 1.40% 1.50%
Source: U.S. Census: 1990, 2000 STF-3 Data

Housing Values

Median Value

Table 7-5 shows housing value statistics for the Town of Maine, the County and State. Specifically, the column to the right shows the median (or middle) value of select owner-occupied houses for each specified area. This value includes only single-family houses that are located on less than 10 acres. Additionally, this statistic only considers houses without a business or medical office on the property. As shown below, the Town of Maine has median housing values higher than that of the County but about the same as the State overall.

Table 7-5: Median Housing Value
Median Value (dollars)
Maine $111,200
Marathon County $95,800
Wisconsin $112,200
Source: U.S. Census: 1990, 2000 STF-3 Data

Range of Values 

Table 7-6 shows the range of housing values that exist in Maine. Compared to overall percentages for Marathon County, the Town of Maine has more houses in the high value categories.

Table 7-6: Range of Housing Values
Number of Houses per Housing Value Category Maine Marathon County
< $49,999 22 1,459
% 4% 5%
$50,000 to $99,999 200 13,405
% 36% 49%
$100,000 to $149,999 214 8,220
% 38% 30%
$150,000 to $199,999 82 2,368
% 15% 9%
$200,000 or more 42 1,714
% 8% 6%
Source: U.S. Census: 1990, 2000 STF-3 Data

Housing Affordability

Several factors impact the varied levels of housing affordability in Marathon County. These factors include rent and mortgage payments, maintenance expenses, lot size, and required or desired amenities for the home. Household size and income are also key factors contributing to what housing options are available and accessible to residents. 

Statistically speaking, those spending in excess of 35 percent of their total household income on housing costs may be facing affordability difficulties. The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) recommends that rental-housing costs not exceed 30 percent of the monthly income. HUD also indicates that mortgage lenders are more willing to make loans if the scheduled mortgage payment is less than 29 percent of the monthly household income. The percentage of households in the Town of Maine that pay more than 35 percent of their income on housing costs is similar to that of the County and State among owner-occupied households. 

Table 7-7: Housing Affordability
Owner Occupied Renter Occupied
Median selected monthly owner costs1 Median Selected monthly renter costs1
Mortgage No
Mortgage %2 Median
rent Median
rent %2
Maine $959 $297 9% $481 $681 0%
Marathon County $916 $295 10% $423 $484 20%
Wisconsin $1,024 $333 9% $473 $540 25%
1In dollars
2Percent paying over 35% of household income on housing
Source: U.S. Census: 1990, 2000 STF-3 Data

Additionally, Table 7-7 shows that select median owner-occupied costs in the Town, both with and without a mortgage, are similar to median figures for Marathon County and the State. Median contract rent costs appear to be consistent between the Town, the County and the State. Median gross rent, however, is significantly higher in the Town. Technical documentation from the Census states that contract rent is the monthly rent agreed to or contracted for, regardless of any furnishings, utilities, fees, meals, or services that may be included. For vacant units, it is the monthly rent asked for the rental unit at the time of enumeration. Gross rent is the contract rent plus the estimated average monthly cost of utilities (electricity, gas, water and sewer) and fuels (oil, coal, kerosene, wood, etc.) if these are paid by or for the renter. (U.S. Census STF 3 Technical Documentation Guide)

Special Housing

Senior Housing

In Marathon County, housing for seniors and populations with special needs is primarily provided in the urbanized areas in and around Wausau. The Marathon County Aging and Disability Resource Center, the Wisconsin Department of Health and Family Services, and the Marathon County United Way all maintain a list of these housing options throughout the County. As the number of elderly persons increases in the coming years, there will most likely be an increased need for these types of housing options. This trend will be seen throughout Marathon County, the State of Wisconsin, and the Nation. 

The Highway 51 area is the center of Marathon County for population, jobs, and housing opportunities. Most of the County�s senior housing opportunities are centered in and around this area as well. There are approximately 110 different senior and special needs housing programs and facilities in and around the Wausau metropolitan area. 

Assistance Programs 

There are a variety of State and Federal housing programs geared at addressing a variety of housing issues. Grants and low interest loans are available for counties, communities, or individual homeowners. The following housing resources are available to participants as specified by program.

� Community Development Block Grant (CDBG)-Small Cities Housing

� Home Investment Partnerships Program (HOME)
--Rental Rehabilitation Program 
--Home Owner and Accessibility Rehabilitation Program 
--Home Ownership Program 
--Wisconsin Fresh Start Initiative provides at-risk young people with education, skills, and career direction leading to economic self-sufficiency.

� Homeless Programs (Wisconsin Department of Administration [WDOA])
--HUD Emergency Shelter Grants 
--State Shelter Subsidy Grants 
--Transitional Housing

� Local Housing Organization Grant (LHOG)
State grants are available to enable community-based organizations, tribes and housing authorities to increase their capacity to provide affordable housing opportunities and services. 

� HOME Loans and Home Improvement Loans (Wisconsin Housing and Economic Development Authority [WHEDA]) 

� Housing-Related Consumer Protection Services (Wisconsin Department of Agriculture [WDA]) 
The Trade and Consumer Protection Division is responsible for the investigation of unfair and deceptive business practices and handles individual consumer complaints involving landlord/tenant complaints, and home improvement transactions.


� Farmstead Sales - Some farmers sell their homes to non-farmers but retain the surrounding farmland to rent out and keep in agricultural production. Generally, the homes are purchased by non-farming residents, which can create conflicts with surrounding farming activities. 

� Scattered Lot Development � Retiring farmers are selling off their farms to �city folks� who build large, new homes in the midst of farmland. Some rent out portions of their land for active farming. This can result in fragmentation of farmland and the presence of non-farming residents increases the potential for conflicts between rural residents and farmers regarding smells, noise and other concerns. The Town is interested in looking at tools to prevent scattered lot development, such as conservation subdivisions or requiring larger lots in areas meant to remain active farmland.

8. Cultural Resources

Cultural resources is a broad term that can encompass many aspects of our heritage. Cultural resources may include archaeological sites and cemeteries, historic buildings and landscapes, historic transportation routes, or traditional cultural properties important to American Indians or other cultural groups. Cultural resources are those elements around us that signify our heritage and help to evoke the sense of place that makes an area distinctive. Cultural resources include buildings, sites and landscapes that help communities retain their sense of identity in an increasingly homogenized society.

Brief History of the Town of Maine

Established in 1866, the Town of Maine was named for an early settler, U. E. Maine. An American Indian, Maine was a farmer and early county surveyor. Like other north central Marathon County towns, Maine attracted early German settlers. Farming and quarrying were among the early economic pursuits in the community, along with sawmill employment. A quarry was operated by Anderson Brothers & Johnson. They opened the Ruby Red Quarry in 1895 on the Wisconsin River, across from Granite Heights, another quarry area on the east side of the river in the Town of Texas. The quarry business moved to Wausau in 1913. Other quarries were present, but most eventually moved across the river to Texas. 

Farming was important early on. In 1896, the Wisconsin State Horticultural Society established an experimental orchard on the Ed Single farm in Maine. Apples, plums and cherries were successful crops and by 1910, apples from the orchard won top honors at the Horticultural Society�s annual convention.

Maine is also the location of the last remaining round barn in the County. Round barns were encouraged at the turn of the century to save on lumber and because they supposedly provided stronger walls. Located near the intersection of CTH A and 60th Avenue, the round barn was built in 1899 by Carl Tisch and still exists today at the Hillcrest Drive and 60th Avenue at Willow Springs Garden complex. 

The settlement of Taegesville was located in the southwest on the border with the Town of Berlin. Taegesville formed around a saloon built by August Taege in 1880 along the Wausau Road (now CTH A). Taege later built a cheese factory to serve the local farmers as well as a general store that also housed the post office for many years.

Properties Listed on the National Register of Historic Places (NRHP) 

There are no properties in the Town of Maine listed on the NRHP. The Town does not have a local historic preservation commission.

The Wisconsin Historical Society maintains the Wisconsin Architecture & History Inventory (AHI) that identifies any properties that may have been surveyed in the past; the Inventory does not convey special status and may not be current. 

The inventory may be reviewed at: www.wisconsinhistory.org/ahi/index.html. 
There are 17 historic properties in Maine that have been previously surveyed and included in the AHI. The State Historic Preservation Office (SHPO) has identified 9 archaeological sites and historic cemeteries in Maine. The cemeteries are listed in Table 8-1. 

Table 8-1: Known Cemeteries 
Cemetery Name Location Section
St. Paul Luth/Jehn Co. K 4N
Maine 4S
St. Johannes Evang. Lutheran N. 44th Ave., on side road across from St. John Church 4S
Zion Lutheran/Grace Co. K 8N
Maple Grove Naugart Dr. 20 N
Source: www.rootsweb.com/~wimarath/CenLocations.htm

Cultural Resources Opportunities and Constraints

� Lack of Current Information -- Although a brief countywide historic properties survey was carried out in 1975-77, there has been no update. Many properties identified at that time may be gone, while other properties not previously surveyed may now be evaluated in a new context. It is necessary for the Town to have current information about cultural resources in order to maximize planning and make the best use of historic properties.

� No Recognition Process -- Outside the City of Wausau, there is no process to recognize historic buildings or begin to plan for their protection. Once historic properties are identified, towns and villages do not have an established mechanism for recognizing them or integrating them into ongoing planning processes.

� Rural Character and Historic Resources --In Marathon County, residents have expressed a strong desire to preserve the rural character of the County and raised concerns about increasing ex-urban development and the decline of working farms. An important part of rural character is the rural landscape and the buildings that convey that sense of place. While it is important to address the location and type of new development, there is also a need to preserve some visible reminders of rural character, including working farms. Without preserving some of the existing resources, including farmsteads and farmlands, the very characteristics that attracted residents will increasingly be lost.

� Protection of Archaeological Sites and Cemeteries � Cultural resources planning includes identification and protection of archaeological sites and historic cemeteries. The Wisconsin Historical Society maintains a list of reported sites and cemeteries, representing a fraction of sites that are actually present. This information is often overlooked and should be incorporated into the planning process for local communities. 


No significant issues have been identified.

9. Community Facilities

Community facilities include an array of services and facilities associated with schools, libraries, public protection, and health care. This section describes the existing community facilities and services located in or used by the Town of Maine.


Primary and Secondary Schools 

The Town of Maine is served by the Wausau School District. The Wausau School District has a pre-school center, 13 elementary schools (grades K-5), 2 middle schools (grades 6-8), and 2 high schools (9-12). One of the district's facilities is located in Maine, Maine Elementary School, near the intersection of CTH K and North 44th Avenue, and all residents of the Town are within the Maine Elementary attendance zone. Figure 9-1 shows area schools and Table 9-1 indicates enrollment in recent school years.

The district reports that most students attend the middle and high school on the side of the Wisconsin River where they reside; however, in order to balance attendance between schools, the Town of Maine was switched to the East High area. Families who moved to the Town of Maine after January 1999 are in the East High area, while families who lived in Maine prior to that date retain the option to attend West High. Therefore, some Maine residents attend Horace Mann Middle School at 3101 North 13th Street and Wausau East High School at 2607 N. 18th Street. 

A new Wausau East High School is under construction at North 18th Street and North 25th Street off STH 52. The new school will provide a state of the art facility, representing an investment of $42 million, and replace the inadequate and obsolete existing school. The Wausau School District undertook a number of major projects in the 1990s to upgrade, expand, and build schools as ratified by citizens through public referenda in 1991, 1995, and 1999. 

There are no private schools in the Town of Maine. However there are several in the Wausau metro area and to the north in the City of Merrill.

Table 9-1: Wausau School District Enrollment
Year Enrollment PreK-12
1996-1997 9,300
1997-1998 9,386
1998-1999 9,267
1999-2000 9,208
2000-2001 9,015
2001-2002 8,944
Source: State of Wisconsin, Department of Public Instruction

Post-Secondary Educational Facilities 

University of Wisconsin � Marathon County (UW-MC)- UW-MC, located in Wausau, offers lower level (freshman/sophomore) college classes, leading to a baccalaureate degree. Associate Degrees are offered in Arts & Sciences, and Bachelor�s Degrees (through collaborative degree programs with UW Oshkosh and UW Stevens Point) offered in Business Administration, General Studies, and Nursing. Enrollment in 2002-2003 was approximately 1,300 students.
Northcentral Technical College (NTC) - NTC, located in Wausau, offers 40 one- and two-year programs and certificates in business, technical, health and industrial fields. Approximately 2,300 full- and part-time students attend classes, although more than 16,000 people take at least one class annually.


The Town of Maine is served by the Marathon County Public Library system (see Figure 9-1). The Wausau Headquarters Library, located on First Street in downtown Wausau, completed an expansion to 82,000 square feet in 1995. This new main Wausau Library is open seven days a week and offers over 555,800 volumes, including books, magazines and other materials, as well as internet access.

Public Protection 


The Town uses the Marathon County Sheriffs Department for police protection and law enforcement. Figure 9-2 illustrates police service areas.

Fire and Emergency Response 

The Town has a volunteer fire department with about 30 fire fighters. The department has 3 tankers, 2 fire engines, and a 4-wheeler used for grass fires. The Town provides fire service to the Village of Brokaw and the towns of Stettin and Berlin. Figure 9-3 illustrates fire service districts.

Ambulance service is provided by the City of Wausau and First Responders service is provided by the Town. The First Responders Team includes 10-12 people. The user pays charges for ambulance and first responder service through their insurance. However, the Town has experienced difficulties in collecting payments for some First Responder services. 

E-911 Dispatch Service - The Marathon County Sheriff�s Department Communications Division provides E-911 Dispatch for all Police, Fire, and Emergency Medical Services (EMS) agencies in Marathon County. The Communications Division services 85 user agencies and also provides alert paging support for the Emergency Management Office, District Attorney, and Medical Examiners Office. 

The users are served by a microwave linked voted repeater radio system, consisting of a control center at the Sheriff�s Department, and nine remote radio tower sites spread throughout the County. The system is also utilized by the Marathon County Highway Department and the Wausau Fire Department to support their radio communications. The 37 base radio transmitters and 479 mobile radios that make up the integrated system are maintained and serviced by the Sheriff Department�s radio technician.


Figure 9-4 shows the major hospitals and clinics in the area. The major hospital in Marathon County is Wausau Hospital at 425 Pine Ridge Boulevard in Wausau. Wausau Hospital was created in the 1970s from a merger of St. Mary�s Hospital and Memorial Hospital. A new building was completed in 1979 and expansions followed in 1982 and 1992. The 321-bed facility is a multi-specialty regional health center serving a 12-county region in north central Wisconsin. Annual admissions in 2001 totaled 13,631.

Wausau Hospital and its parent corporation, Community Health Care, and other nearby hospitals are part of the Wisconsin Valley Health Network. Hospitals nearby that are part of the network and may serve Marathon County residents include:

� Good Samaritan Health Center Merrill, WI

St. Joseph�s Hospital in Marshfield and St. Michael�s Hospital in Stevens Point are both operated by Ministry Health Care. St. Joseph�s Hospital is located at 611 Saint Joseph Avenue in Marshfield and offers a full array of services, specialty services and a complete rehabilitation unit. St. Michael�s is a fully accredited acute care facility with 181 beds and nearly 200 doctors on staff. It is located at 900 Illinois Avenue in Stevens Point.

Working in conjunction with St. Joseph�s Hospital is the Marshfield Clinic. Marshfield Clinic began in 1916 when six physicians decided to join their efforts. The Marshfield Clinic has grown to over 700 physicians with 41 Regional Centers in Wisconsin and Upper Michigan. Marshfield Clinic first established satellite locations in 1976. Offices in Marathon County are located in Athens, Colby/Abbotsford, Marathon, Mosinee, Schofield (Everest Center), Stratford, and Wausau (4 locations).

Ministry Health Care announced plans in July 2002 to construct a 104-bed, $100 million hospital and medical office complex in Weston near the intersection of STH 29 and CTH X. This facility � now called the Weston Regional Medical Center - opened in 2005. 

North Central Health Care (NCHC) � In addition to the hospitals and clinics described above, Marathon County is served by NCHC, a public agency that also serves Langlade and Lincoln counties. The NCHC main campus is located at 2400 Marshall Street in Wausau. Additional offices are located in Antigo (Langlade Health Care Center) and Merrill and Tomahawk (Lincoln Health Care Center). According to their web site, NCHC offers outpatient, day hospital, community support and inpatient services for mental/emotional problems; vocational, life skill training, early intervention, housing and care management services for the developmentally disabled; and assessment, individual and outpatient group counseling, intensive programming, day hospital, referral for residential and inpatient treatment, and education for alcohol and other drug problems. Services for detoxification and for persons suffering from problems with gambling addiction are also offered.

NCHC operates a nursing home (Mount View Care Center) that offers skilled nursing services at the main campus in Wausau. This facility has a licensed capacity of 320 and serves persons requiring either short term or long term skilled nursing care because of complex physical needs, psychiatric and neurological diseases, dementia or behavior problems.

Child Care 

The Wisconsin Child Care Resource and Referral (CCR&R) Network is a membership organization made up of 17 community-based CCR&R agencies serving the State of Wisconsin. 

CCR&R agencies assist parents in selecting quality childcare, help to increase the supply of childcare in areas that may be lacking sufficient care, offer information and technical support to potential child care providers, and give technical assistance and support to existing childcare programs. 

Each agency manages a database of existing childcare providers and programs, collects data about childcare rates, provider and teacher salaries, the number of parents and children using their services, the type of care requested and the children's ages. 

The community-based CCR&R agencies that provide services to Marathon and adjacent counties are:

Table 9-2: Area Child Care Providers
Counties Agency Contact Information
Langlade, Lincoln, Marathon, Taylor Child Care Connection http://www.childcareconnectionrr.org/
(800) 848-5229


� New High School Attendance � Under current district boundaries, students who have moved to Maine since 1999 are sent to the Wausau East High School. Traditionally, students attended schools on the west side of the Wisconsin River they reside on. This shift results in new residents having to send their kids to a school farther away.

� First Responder Payments - Freeway traffic has created a problem for Maine�s emergency services. As a First Responder service, the Town�s emergency providers are called to assist freeway motorists. However, it can be difficult to collect payment for these services, which should come through their insurance companies. 

10. Parks 

Existing Parks, Trails and Open Space 

Local Park and Recreation Facilities 

The Town of Maine does not operate any public parks and only owns one park property � the Maine Lion�s Park next to the Town Hall. This park includes a shelter, volleyball court, picnic tables and grills. While the Town owns the land, the Lion�s Club takes responsibility for park maintenance.

County or State Parks, Forest and Trails

Several County and State park facilities are within close proximity to the Town of Maine. These are shown on Figure 10-1 and include:

Wisconsin River Park - Marathon County owns the undeveloped Wisconsin River Park that consists of 290-acres which straddle the Wisconsin River. About 80-acres of the park are located in the Town of Maine, with the remainder located in the Town of Texas. There is no access to the portion in Maine. The park land has some archeological resources and, when developed, will provide access to the Wisconsin River. Proposed development includes extraction of extensive gravel deposits located in Texas. The pit resulting from the gravel extraction will be used to create an artificial lake for recreation. Long range plans include facilities for picnicking, boat launches, camping, swimming, and hiking.

Marathon Park - Marathon Park in the City of Wausau is a 78-acre County park that provides a large number of facilities and programs. Marathon Park is the home of the Wisconsin Valley Fair, which utilizes a number of historic exposition buildings. The park's mature stand of white pines is highly visible along Stewart Avenue. The park also contains a wide variety of recreation facilities, including basketball and tennis courts, skating rinks, and a new grandstand area.

Sunny Vale Park - Marathon County owns and maintains Sunny Vale Park in a narrow strip of the Town of Stettin and the City of Wausau south of STH 29 at 72nd Avenue. Also known as "Manmade" Park, Sunny Vale is a popular 299-acre park with facilities for swimming in Manmade Lake, picnicking, fishing, and model airplane flying. Sunny Vale Softball Complex is a 71-acre facility managed by the Wausau Area Softball Association through a contract with Marathon County. The complex has six lighted softball diamonds, each with a dugout, bleachers, and scoreboards. 

Rib Mountain State Park - Rib Mountain State Park is located within the Town of Rib Mountain. The park's main feature is Rib Mountain, which at 1924 feet above sea level is one of the highest elevations in the State of Wisconsin. The park surrounds the mountain and has the following facilities: a picnic area with 65 tables, a camping area with 31 developed sites, 3 hiking trails, a nature trail, and a private downhill skiing area (Granite Peak).

Park System Needs 

None identified.


None identified.

11. Economic Development

The condition of the local economy directly influences local growth and development, and therefore must be considered when planning for a community�s future. Employment patterns and economic trends generally occur on a regional scale. Oftentimes residents of one community work in another. Similarly changes in a major industry can impact jobs and growth far beyond the community where the business is physically located.

It is therefore important to understand a local community�s economy in light of its regional context. The following section provides a brief overview of the economy in Marathon County, in terms of key economic sectors and the regional labor force. A more specific description of employment trends, major local employers or industries, and where most residents of Town of Maine work follows. Potential economic development opportunities and/or issues regarding the local economy are also identified.

The Town supports economic development but wants the economic development to be compatible with the safety of the surrounding residential neighborhood and consistent with other goals and plans for the Town, including agriculture. This is currently not accomplished with irregular loss of Town lands through annexation. The Town wants to incorporate new economic development within the Town borders to effectively and efficiently implement its Comprehensive Land Use Plan. In order to accomplish this, shared government services may be needed for Town lands pursuant to intergovernmental cooperation with an adjoining municipality for joint planning and joint decision-making under Section 66.1001(2)(g). 

County Economic Environment

Originally, the Marathon County economy was based on forest resources and diversified agriculture. Increased population and infrastructure � railroads, roads and dams for power enabled the area to evolve beyond simple agricultural and logging operations. Resources that once left the area unprocessed were now transformed into finished products in the County, providing employment opportunities and adding value in forest products and agricultural processing. A number of related manufacturing operations grew up in the area, some based on forest products and agricultural products, others supplying the existing industries with fabricated metal products. As these industries progressed, so did industries such as transportation, communications, public utilities, government, trade, finance, insurance and real estate. The County now enjoys a well-diversified economy.

Agricultural Economy

Located in the agricultural area of north central Marathon County, the economic health and vitality of Maine is affected by the economic health of the agricultural economy. However, the agricultural economy is subject to national and international pressures, creating challenges for rural areas seeking to adapt to the changing economic environment and preserve their rural agricultural heritage.

The Marathon County agricultural economy is in a depressed state due to a downturn in prices for agricultural goods such as milk and ginseng. At the same time that prices for farm commodities are low, cash rents for Wisconsin farmland has increased, and the percentage of farm equity associated with real estate values have increased significantly. The average cost for agricultural land being divert to non-farm uses has increased from $544 per acre in 1990 to nearly $1,200 per acre in 2000; this compares with the average cost for agricultural land continuing in agricultural use, which has increased from $612 per acre in 1990 to nearly $1,000 per acre in 2000. When farms are not profitable, and the value of land rises farmers have a harder time competing for the land base. 

The following information regarding forces influencing changes in the rural area was summarized from two reports prepared by the Marathon County Task Force on the Rural Economy: Agricultural Issues in Marathon County (January 10, 2003) and Report of the Marathon County Task Force on the Rural Economy (April 2003):

� Net farm profits are increasingly a function of Federal United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) support payments.
� The average age of the current agricultural owner/operator is nearly 55; a large number are nearing retirement.
� The low entry rate into agriculture reflects the high capital investment and low profit margins.
� The number of dairy herds decreased by 40% (1565 to 951 farms) in the past 13 years, and the total number of cows decreased from 77,000 in 1990 to 64,000 in 2000, a decrease of 17%.
� Dairy production is now more concentrated; the average size of dairy herds increased from 42 cows in 1990 to 62 cows in 2001. Nearly 50 dairies have over 300 animal units (200 cows), and 12 dairies have more than 1,000 animal units (more than 700 cows.)
� Local milk production is not sufficient to reliably meet the demand of local dairy processors
� The immigrant work force associated with industrial farms, impacts public services such as schools, social services and law enforcement.
� Crop land and open space are being broken up into smaller fields by rural residences.
� Crop land production is being concentrated into fewer, larger operations.
� Soil erosion is increasing and soil organic matter content is decreasing.
� Environmental regulation of farms by the State and Federal government continues to increase. Agriculture is identified as a major non-point source of water pollution (sediment and nutrients) in the U.S.
� Larger farm equipment damages local roads and farm traffic is increasing.
� Conflicts between various land uses in rural areas are increasing.

Key Economic Sectors

Key sectors of a regional economy can be identified by size; by growth or decline in employment; by a concentration of the industry in the local area exceeding the national concentration. An industry that shows a higher concentration of employment than the national average is considered a �basic industry� and is identified by a technique called �Location Quotient� analysis. Basic industries are those sectors that export a product or service from the local community into the national or international economy. They are a critical part of the �economic engine� for a region, affecting the growth and health of many dependent sectors such as retail, transportation, construction, and local services. Table 11-1 lists the top ten industry groups in Marathon County based on number of employees.

Table 11-1: Marathon County Top 10 Industry Groups Based on Number of Employees
Industry Group
Employees Numeric change
1-year 5-year
Health Services 139 4,646 251 -276
Lumber & Wood Products 41 4,438 -30 253
Educational Services 22 3,792 108 243
Eating and Drinking Places 192 3,554 219 335
Fabricated Metal Products 32 3,458 -184 168
Insurance Carriers 24 3,339 -171 *
Miscellaneous Retail 120 3,142 206 1,206
Paper and Allied Products 11 2,649 4 *
Industrial Machinery & Eqmt 37 2,642 41 697
Wholesale Trade � Durable 164 2,521 -89 63
*data suppressed to maintain confidentiality 
Source: Wisconsin Department of Workforce Development, ES-202, December 2001

Local Economic Environment

Table 2-7 illustrates population and employment information for the Town of Maine. In 2000, there were 1,617 people employed at jobs located in Maine. A breakdown of employment by sector indicates that most local employment was in manufacturing, which had 460 employees. Self-employed/Farm also accounts for a fairly large number of employees, with 349 workers. Most non-farm employment is located in commercial/industrial businesses mostly concentrated along CTH K and WW.

Table 11-2: Population and Employment by Sector, 2000

Commercial 128
Manufacturing 460
Service 251
Other 429
Self-Employed/Farm 349

TOTAL 1,617
Source: Marathon County 2030 Population and Employment Projections Methodology Report, NCWRPC, 2003

Employment Projections

Information on employment in Marathon County is gathered separately for non-farm and farm employment. The Wisconsin Department of Workforce Development (DWD) collects data on non-farm employment. The DWD estimated non-farm employment in Marathon County to be 49,407 in 1990 and 65,630 in 2000. This represents about a 33 percent increase over ten years. Data on farm employment is collected by the Census of Agriculture and consists of hired farm labor and operators. In 1987, farm employment in Marathon County was estimated to be 11,643 and in 1997 it was estimated to be 8,298. This represents a decrease of almost 29 percent. 

The North Central Wisconsin Regional Planning Commission (NCWRPC) computed employment projections, based on the assumption that the historical growth rates described above would continue through 2030. These projections are shown in Table 11-3.

Table 11-3: Employment Projections � 2000-2030
Total Employment by Year
2000 2005 2010 2015 2020 2025 2030
Maine 1,617 1,681 1,746 1,810 1,874 1,939 2,003
County 72,508 75,625 78,742 81,859 84,976 88,093 91,210
Source: Marathon County 2030 Population and Employment Projections Methodology Report, NCWRPC, 2003

An employment forecast completed by the NCWRPC in 2003 indicates continued employment growth for the Town of Maine. By the year 2030, it is estimated that the Town will provide employment to over 2,000 workers. This represents an employment increase of 24 percent and assumes a moderate growth rate based on the rate of change in employment between 1990 and 2000 for non-farm employment. As shown in Table 11-4, the estimates suggest an overall increase in employment by 2030 between 19.6 percent if a lower growth rate occurs and 32 percent if a higher growth rate occurs. This is slightly lower than the employment growth rates estimated for the County overall and reflects the historical decline in agricultural employment.

Table 11-4: Percent Change in Employment, 2000-2030
Percent Change in Employment by Growth Rate
Low Growth Moderate Growth High Growth
Maine +19.6 +23.9 +32.3
Marathon County +21 +26 +34
Source: Marathon County 2030 Population and Employment Projections Methodology Report, NCWRPC, 2003

Employment projections were also prepared for the 2035 LRTP, and are based on building permit and other data gathered between 2000 and 2005. These projections, shown in Table 11-5, indicate a slightly higher rate of employment growth than the NCWRPC projections, however the total number of employees is significantly lower. This is primarily due to the difference in employment in 2000 reported by the NCWRPC and the LRTP.

Table11-5: Employment Projections, (MPO) 2000-2030
Total Employment by Year
2000 2005 2010 2015 2020 2025 2030 % chg.
NCWRPC 1,617 1,681 1,746 1,810 1,874 1,939 2,003 24%
MPO Adjusted 943 989 1,036 1,082 1,129 1,175 1,222 29.6%
Source: Marathon County 2030 Population and Employment Projections Methodology Report, NCWRPC 2003 and Marathon County Metropolitan Planning Commission [MPO adjusted - prepared for 2035 LRTP]

Major Local Employers 

� Van Der Geest Farm � This is the largest dairy farm in the County and is located on CTH A.

� Anderson Brothers & Johnson � This is a quarry mining business that includes Michel�s Corporation. It currently has less than 50 employees, but the business is expanding.

� 3M � 3M operates a mining facility located along the Wisconsin River.


� Increase in Farmland Prices � The size of farms has increased and the number has decreased. At the same time the price of farmland has increased. Increased cost per acre makes it difficult for small farmers to expand or even start farming. High farmland prices also create an incentive for older farmers to retire from farming. As a result, many farmers rent their land for others to farm or use as residences. It is noted that land prices on either side of CTH K are very high and are increasing as demand for commercial development increases in this area.

� Decline of Ginseng Industry � The decline in the ginseng industry has fostered a turnover of ginseng farms and conversion to other land uses, primarily residential. In the last 5 to 10 years there has been a decrease of about 75 percent in ginseng farming in the Town of Maine.

� Specialized Agriculture � To counteract the decline in traditional farming, particularly on smaller farms, some farmers are exploring opportunities to use or lease their farmland for specialized types of farming. These might include crops such as corn or soybeans, or young livestock operations where calves are raised for about two years before being transferred to a dairy.

12. Intergovernmental Cooperation

This section describes existing mechanisms that the Town of Maine uses or wishes to use to coordinate and cooperate with other units of government, including: Village of Brokaw, City of Wausau, Marathon County, adjacent towns, the school district, the State of Wisconsin and its agencies, and the federal government. The purpose of this analysis is to identify the existing and planned cooperative mechanisms and summarize the major challenges and issues regarding intergovernmental cooperation, including opportunities to reduce or eliminate duplicative or inefficient services. 

� Incompatible goals, policies and development resulting from annexation and the lack of intergovernmental cooperation. 
� Unsafe neighborhoods resulting from past annexations, placing our families and children in residential areas at risk. 
� Irregular borders resulting from annexation that do not allow for the implementation of a Comprehensive Land Use Plan. 
� Opportunities and authority for joint planning and joint decision-making under Section 66.1001(2)(g). 

A mechanism for cooperation and coordination are currently found in the State statutes, including Section 66.1001(2)(g). These can occur between the Town and other local regional, state, or federal entities. 

Local and Regional Level Cooperation

Shared Services and Facilities

Fire and Emergency Response - The Town provides fire and first responder service to the Town of Maine, Village of Brokaw, and the Towns of Stettin and Berlin. Ambulance service is provided by the City of Wausau. 

Municipal Water and Sewer

Currently, municipal water and sewer is only provided to residents and landowners in the Town of Maine who annex to the Village of Brokaw or the City of Wausau. The Town wishes to provide these services as provided under Section 66.1001(2)(g) for shared public services under intergovernmental cooperation for joint planning and joint decision-making to provide these services to Town residents and landowners. 

Cooperative Practices 

The Town currently provides some road maintenance and snowplowing services to the Village of Brokaw, the City of Wausau, the Towns of Stettin and Berlin, and the Town of Scott (Lincoln County). 

The Town wishes to expand these programs as provided under Section 66.1001(2)(g) to adjacent municipalities, the school district, Marathon County, and state and federal agencies. 

Existing or Potential Conflicts 

� Annexation. Annexation in the past has afforded and defeated the Town�s goals and objectives and implementation of a Comprehensive Land Use Plan. The Town seeks to avoid these past practices and problems through intergovernmental cooperation, as provided under Section 66.1001(2)(g). 

� Creation of a Water or Sanitary District. The Town is interested in exploring the feasibility of creating a sanitary or water district to provide and service water or service as a shared public service under Chapter 66 of Wisconsin Statutes without annexation. 


November 21, 2009 Conditions and Issues
November 21, 2009 Goals, Objectives, Policies & Implementation

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