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Village council rejects appeal of Spring Green couple’s dog breeding operation

A Spring Green couple planning to run a controversial dog breeder have hit a snag in their bid to set up the operation that will sell beagles for medical testing.

In July, the Village of Spring Green plan commission rejected a conditional use permit for a livestock facility at Jill and Clinton Kane’s Pearl Road residence, which the couple appealed.

In a 4-1 vote after a 90-minute closed meeting on Tuesday night, the zoning appeals board denied that appeal.

A Spring Green village council rejects an appeal for a couple’s dog breeding, after the planning commission refused the permit in July. The couple already have a permit for a larger facility in the CITY of Spring Green (yes, this is getting a bit confusing) @WISCTV_News3 pic.twitter.com/ieEE7TGjnY

— Madalyn O’Neill (@news3madalyn) October 9, 2019

The Kanes currently have a separate permit for a nearby kennel on Big Hollow Road to breed dogs in the town of Spring Green, which had to be approved by a Sauk County committee last summer. This came after the city rescinded its recommendation for approval following community concerns.

“It’s been a battle,” said Spring Green resident Nicole Peterson, who lives near the facility.

Peterson and others against the Pearl Road ranch call the latest battle a victory.

“It’s not just about search dogs, it’s about our whole community,” Peterson said. “I think that’s just not the type of area or community that this type of large-scale dog-breeding facility belongs to.”

Peterson and many others have expressed concern that the installation will lead to increased noise levels and lower property values, not to mention ethical concerns.

“There’s so much better research these days that it can be done in different ways, and we don’t need to use pet dogs to do that research,” she said.

“Everyone I’ve spoken to thinks it’s a necessary evil. Unfortunately, there’s some good that can come from that,” said Zoning Appeal Board member Michael Mertens. “If there is a way to do it and it can benefit people medically, pets medically, there are benefits and I think people recognize that.”

Mertens is the only one of five board members to vote against denying the appeal, saying he believes the use of the Kanes meets the definition of a kennel allowed by the village ordinance.

Board Chairman Todd Miller said the intent of the word’s meaning in the ordinance is unclear and that expanding the definition of kennel to include facilities that breed dogs at research purposes could be detrimental.

“He still stands, is it reasonable to have this kennel in a garage attached to the residence in the zoning district,” Miller said at the meeting. “I think very strongly that’s unreasonable.”

Council members in favor of dismissing the appeal cited neighbor concerns about nuisance and noise, although Jane Leaf, who lives down the road from the Kanes, spoke up.

“I didn’t hear anything,” Leaf said. ” I do not hear anything. There is no embarrassment. »

The Kanes and their attorney, Michael Curran, attended the meeting but did not comment, other than to say their next step will be an appeal to the circuit court.

Residents of the Village of Spring Green can vote on a referendum banning research puppy mills next year.

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