Pulera v. Town of Richmond

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Justia Opinion Summary

The thirty-day period under Wis. Stat. 68.13(1) during which certiorari review may be obtained for a town board’s highway order to lay out, alter, or discontinue a highway begins to run on the date that the highway order is recorded by the register of deeds.

In this case, the circuit court granted the town boards’ motions to dismiss Appellant’s petitions for certiorari review of highway orders recorded in Rock and Walworth Counties. The Supreme Court reversed and remanded for certiorari review in either Walworth County Circuit Court or Rock County Circuit Court because Appellant’s petitions were filed within thirty days of the dates on which the highway orders were recorded by the registers of deeds.

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2017 WI 61 SUPREME COURT CASE NO.: COMPLETE TITLE: OF WISCONSIN 2015AP1016 & 2015AP1119 Margaret Pulera, Petitioner-Appellant, v. Town of Richmond and Town of Johnstown, Respondents-Respondents. ON CERTIFICATION FROM THE COURT OF APPEALS OPINION FILED: SUBMITTED ON BRIEFS: ORAL ARGUMENT: SOURCE OF APPEAL: COURT: COUNTY: JUDGE: June 20, 2017 January 17, 2017 Circuit Rock and Walworth Barbara W. McCrory and Phillip A. Koss JUSTICES: CONCURRED: DISSENTED: NOT PARTICIPATING: R.G. BRADLEY, J. concurs. A.W. Bradley, J. dissents, joined by ABRAHAMSON, J. KELLY, J. did not participate. ATTORNEYS: For the petitioner-appellant, there were briefs filed by Sarah A. Huck, Malinda Eskra and Reinhart, Boerner, Van Dueren, S.C., Milwaukee, and oral argument by Sarah Huck. For the respondents-respondents, there was a brief by Sara L. Gehrig and Nowlan & Mouat LLP, Janesville, and oral argument by Sara L. Gehrig. 2017 WI 61 NOTICE This opinion is subject to further editing and modification. The final version will appear in the bound volume of the official reports. Nos. 2015AP1016 & 2015AP1119 (L.C. Nos. 2014CV1232 & 2014CV871) STATE OF WISCONSIN : IN SUPREME COURT Margaret Pulera, FILED Petitioner-Appellant, v. JUN 20,2017 Town of Richmond and Town of Johnstown, Diane M. Fremgen Clerk of Supreme Court Respondents-Respondents. Appeal from consolidated orders of the Circuit Courts for Rock and Walworth Counties. ¶1 before PATIENCE the court DRAKE on Reversed and cause remanded. ROGGENSACK, certification C.J. by the This appeal court of comes appeals.1 Margaret Pulera (Pulera) appeals dismissals of the petitions for certiorari review of highway orders recorded 1 in Rock2 and Pulera v. Town of Richmond and Town of Johnstown, Nos. 2015AP1016 and 2015AP1119, unpublished certification (Wis. Ct. App. Dec. 23, 2015). 2 The Honorable Barbara W. McCrory presided. Nos. Walworth3 Counties. the thirty-day during which 2015AP1016 & 2015AP1119 The issue certified is: what event triggers period certiorari board's highway order. the terms of under § Wis. review may Stat. be § 68.13(1)(2013-14)4 obtained for a town To address this issue, we must interpret 68.13(1), the statute affording certiorari review, in accord with Wis. Stat. § 82.15, the statute governing appeals of highway orders.5 ¶2 We conclude that the thirty-day period during which certiorari review is available for a town board's highway order to lay out, alter or discontinue a highway begins to run on the date that deeds.6 the highway order is recorded by the register of This interpretation best comports with the language and structure of Wis. Stat. § 68.13 and Wis. Stat. § 82.15. And, in addition, a it provides aggrieved persons and parties date certain for commencement of the thirty-day period during which judicial review of a highway order is available. 3 The Honorable Phillip A. Koss presided. 4 All subsequent references to the Wisconsin Statutes are to the 2013-14 version unless otherwise indicated. 5 In Dawson v. Town of Jackson, 2011 WI 77, 336 Wis. 2d 218, 801 N.W.2d 316, we acknowledged the problems caused by the interplay of Wis. Stat. § 68.13 and Wis. Stat. § 82.15. The legislature may wish to consider revisiting these statutory provisions. 6 Both towns issued highway orders. Accordingly, we need not address when the deadline begins to run when an individual seeks to appeal a town board's refusal to issue a highway order. 2 Nos. ¶3 the 2015AP1016 & 2015AP1119 Pulera's petitions were filed within thirty days of dates on which the registers of deeds. highway orders were recorded by the Accordingly, we reverse the circuit courts' orders granting the town boards' motions to dismiss Pulera's petitions and remand for certiorari review in either Walworth County Circuit Court or Rock County Circuit Court, as the parties may agree.7 I. ¶4 BACKGROUND The relevant facts in the present case are brief and uncontested. The dispute arises from changes to an intersection located at the county line between Rock and Walworth Counties. Specifically, the intersection is located where County Highway M crosses North County Line Road. Without notifying the Town of Richmond, the Rock County Highway Department made changes to this intersection. To facilitate these changes, the Rock County Highway Department had to discontinue two existing roads. ¶5 On September 9, 2014, the Town of Johnstown (Rock County) and the Town of Richmond (Walworth County) held a joint meeting. At the approved changes to meeting, the both town intersection boards that Highway Department had already completed. 7 the retroactively Rock County This required the If the parties do not agree on which circuit court shall conduct the certiorari review, it shall be conducted in Walworth County Circuit Court. 3 Nos. 2015AP1016 & 2015AP1119 town boards to approve construction of a new intersection as well as discontinuance of portions of former highways.8 ¶6 On October 3, 2014, the Richmond Town Board recorded its highway order with the Walworth County Register of Deeds. The order memorialized changes approved at the joint meeting of the town boards. later by The Johnstown Town Board followed a month recording its highway order with the Rock County Register of Deeds on November 3, 2014. ¶7 On November 3, 2014, Pulera filed a certiorari petition in Walworth County Circuit Court that sought review of the Town of Richmond's highway order altering the intersection and discontinuing portions of the highway. Similarly, on December 1, 2014, Pulera filed a certiorari petition in Rock County Circuit Court seeking judicial review of the Town of Johnstown's highway order approving alterations to town a the same highway and intersection. ¶8 On January 23, 2015, each dismiss Pulera's certiorari action.9 filed motion to The towns alleged that 8 The actions of the Rock County Highway Department are not at issue in the present case. They were the subject of Pulera v. Coopman, No. 2013AP322, unpublished slip op. (Wis. Ct. App. Nov. 13, 2013) petition for review denied 2014 WI 50, 354 Wis. 2d 863, 848 N.W.2d 859. 9 On February 27, 2015, Pulera moved to consolidate the two actions in Walworth County Circuit Court. The Walworth County Circuit Court did not address Pulera's motion. Pulera later filed a motion to consolidate in Rock County Circuit Court; it also did not address the motion. The court of appeals consolidated the cases before certifying Pulera's appeals to us. 4 Nos. 2015AP1016 & 2015AP1119 Pulera's petitions were untimely because neither petition was filed within thirty days of Pulera's receipt of the towns' decision to alter the highway as they alleged is required by Wis. Stat. § 68.13.10 ¶9 Rock County Circuit Court dismissed Pulera's action as untimely. which The court reasoned that the thirty-day period during certiorari review may be sought for a highway order commenced when Pulera received actual notice of the vote of the Johnstown Town Board. The circuit court rejected Pulera's argument that the thirty-day period commenced when the register of deeds recorded the town board's highway order. ¶10 The Walworth County Pulera's claim as untimely. Court, the Walworth County Circuit Court also dismissed Unlike the Rock County Circuit Circuit Court concluded that the thirty-day period for seeking certiorari review commenced with the town board's vote. The Walworth County Circuit Court also dismissed the claim for improper venue because a portion of the highway is exclusively in Rock County.11 10 The towns argued that the petition filed in Rock County should be dismissed pursuant to Wis. Stat. § 802.06(2)(a)10., another action pending between the same parties for the same cause. The issue was not addressed by the circuit court, and was not properly developed before this court. Accordingly, we do not address it. 11 We observe that when an intersection is on the county line that separates two counties, venue is proper in either county. See Wis. Stat. § 82.15. Accordingly, venue is proper in Walworth County. And, therefore, the Walworth County Circuit Court incorrectly dismissed Pulera's action for improper venue. 5 Nos. ¶11 The court of appeals consolidated the cases on appeal and certified them for our review. II. A. ¶12 Wis. 2015AP1016 & 2015AP1119 We now reverse. DISCUSSION Standard of Review The present case requires us to interpret and apply Stat. § 68.13 and Wis. Stat. § 82.15. Statutory interpretation and application present questions of law that we review independently, while benefitting from the circuit courts' analyses. Marder v. Bd. of Regents of Univ. of Wis. Sys., 2005 WI 159, ¶19, 286 Wis. 2d 252, 706 N.W.2d 110. B. ¶13 Statutory Construction, General Principles "Judicial deference to the policy choices enacted into law by the legislature requires that statutory interpretation focus primarily on the language of the statute." State ex rel. Kalal v. Circuit Court for Dane Cty., 2004 WI 58, ¶44, 271 Wis. 2d 633, 681 N.W.2d 110. Accordingly, "statutory interpretation 'begins with the language of the statute. meaning of inquiry.'" the statute is plain, we ordinarily If the stop the Id., ¶45 (quoting Seider v. O'Connell, 2000 WI 76, ¶43, 236 Wis. 2d 211, 612 N.W.2d 659). "Statutory language is given its common, ordinary, and accepted meaning, except that technical or specially-defined words or phrases are given their technical or special definitional meaning." Id. (citing Bruno v. Milwaukee Cty., 2003 WI 28, ¶¶8, 20, 260 Wis. 2d 633, 660 N.W.2d 656). 6 Nos. ¶14 2015AP1016 & 2015AP1119 "Context is important to meaning." Id., ¶46. For this reason, "statutory language is interpreted in the context in which it is used; not in isolation but as part of a whole; in relation statutes; to results." the of reasonably, and language surrounding to avoid or absurd closely-related or unreasonable Id. (citing State v. Delaney, 2003 WI 9, ¶13, 259 Wis. 2d 77, 658 N.W.2d 416). And, we interpret statutes in such a way as to give effect to each word. Id. ("Statutory language is read where possible to give reasonable effect to every word, in order to avoid surplusage." (citing State v. Martin, 162 Wis. 2d 883, 894, 470 N.W.2d 900 (1991)). ¶15 "Where statutory language is unambiguous, there is no need to consult extrinsic sources of interpretation, such as legislative history." "The test for Id. (citing Bruno, 260 Wis. 2d 633, ¶20). ambiguity statutory language: generally keeps the focus on the a statute is ambiguous if it is capable of being understood by reasonably well-informed persons in two or more senses." ¶16 It Id., ¶47 (citing Bruno, 260 Wis. 2d 633, ¶19). is within this framework that we interpret and apply the time limits of Wis. Stat. § 68.13(1) as affected by Wis. Stat. § 82.15. C. ¶17 Wisconsin Wisconsin Stat. § 68.13 Stat. § 68.01 governs types of municipal administrative decisions.12 12 appeals from many It provides: A town is defined as a municipality under Wis. Stat. § 68.04. 7 Nos. 2015AP1016 & 2015AP1119 Any person having a substantial interest which is adversely affected by an administrative determination of a governing body, board, commission, committee, agency, officer or employee of a municipality or agent acting on behalf of a municipality as set forth in s. 68.02, may have such determination reviewed as provided in this chapter. Wisconsin Stat. § 68.13(1) provides further guidance: "Any party to a proceeding resulting in a final determination may seek review thereof by certiorari within 30 days of receipt of the final determination." A person aggrieved by a highway order has the same right of appeal. Wis. Stat. § 82.15. Accordingly, a person or party who receives a final adverse determination from a municipal administrative body has thirty days from its receipt to appeal. However, when a determination is "final" and when a party is in "receipt" of such a determination are not defined. These words can become particularly opaque in the context of highway orders issued under Wis. Stat. § 82.12.13 ¶18 Under Wis. Stat. § 82.03(1)(a), a "town board shall have the care and supervision of all highways under the town's jurisdiction." alter or statutory However, a town board that decides to lay out, discontinue requirements a highway detailed must in follow Wis. the Stat. specific ch. 82. Furthermore, there are two ways in which a town board may lay out, alter or discontinue a highway. First, a town board, on its own initiative, can introduce a resolution to lay out, alter 13 The interplay between these two statutes renders each ambiguous. However, nothing in the legislative history provides helpful guidance in ascertaining the meaning of these provisions. 8 Nos. or discontinue a highway. Wis. 2015AP1016 & 2015AP1119 Stat. § 82.10(3). Alternatively, town residents may petition their town board to "lay out, alter, or discontinue any highway." Wis. Stat. § 82.12(10). ¶19 Under either method, a town board is required to provide notice to various landowners and governmental bodies. See Wis. Stat. §§ 82.10(3)14 & (4).15 In addition, a town board is required to hold a public hearing to decide whether creating, altering or discontinuing a highway is in the public interest. Wis. Stat. § 82.11(1) ("At the time and place stated in the notice hearing under to s. 82.10, decide, in the its town board discretion, shall whether hold a public granting the application or resolution is in the public interest."). 14 This section provides: Upon receipt of an application under sub. (1) or the introduction of a resolution under sub. (2), the board shall provide notice of the time and that the place where it will meet to consider the application or resolution. The notice shall contain a legal description of the highway to be discontinued or of the proposed highway to be laid out or altered and a scale map of the land that would be affected by the application or resolution. Wis. Stat. § 82.10(3). 15 A town board "shall publish a class 3 notice under ch. 985" and is required to notify "owners of record lands through which the highway may pass," and the "owners of record of all lands abutting the highway" among others, pursuant to Wis. Stat. § 82.10(4). 9 Nos. ¶20 2015AP1016 & 2015AP1119 Pursuant to Wis. Stat. § 82.12(2), a town board must issue a "highway order" if it decides to grant a petition or approve a resolution to lay out, alter or discontinue a highway. The vote of a town board, in and of itself, does not create a highway order; rather, a "highway order" is a document that is statutorily described in regard to the particulars the document must include.16 Wis. Stat. § 82.01(3). In addition, to give effect to a highway order, the town board is required to take several delineated steps. Wisconsin Stat. § 82.12 provides: The highway order shall be recorded with the register of deeds for the county in which the highway is or will be located and shall be filed with the town clerk. The town clerk shall submit a certified copy of the order to the county highway commissioner. If the town has an official map, the order shall be incorporated into the official map. Wis. Stat. § 82.12(2). ¶21 A person aggrieved by a highway order has the right to seek judicial review of a town board's highway order. Stat. § 82.15 provides: Wisconsin "Any person aggrieved by a highway order, or a refusal to issue such an order, may seek judicial review under s. 68.13. counties, county." the appeal If the highway is on the line between 2 may be in the circuit court of either Wis. Stat. § 82.15. 16 "Highway order" is statutorily described as "an order laying out, altering, or discontinuing a highway or a part of a highway, that contains a legal description of what the order intends to accomplish and a scale map of the land affected by the order." Wis. Stat. § 82.01(3). 10 Nos. ¶22 2015AP1016 & 2015AP1119 If a person or party is aggrieved by a highway order, they may seek review of the order using the certiorari process outlined in Wis. Stat. § 68.13(1). However, a person or party aggrieved by a highway order is subject to the same thirty-day period during which review may be sought, as are others who seek certiorari review under § 68.13(1). ¶23 A "final determination" by the town is a condition precedent to certiorari review under Wis. Stat. § 68.13.17 In addition, Wis. Stat. ch. 82 provides that a highway order must be issued when a town decides to lay out, alter or discontinue a highway. Wis. Stat. § 82.12(2). "contains a legal description It is the highway order that of what the order intends to accomplish and a scale map of the land affected by the order." Wis. Stat. § 82.01(3). ¶24 In addition, it is the recording by the register of deeds that gives public notice of the town board's decision. Public notice is important because there may be persons aggrieved by the town board's decision that were not aware of it. And, the legislature has recognized the importance of this function of the register of deeds. For example, Wis. Stat. § 840.11 governs petitions to alter streets, parks, and other public places. It provides no "order, judgment or decree or 17 Wisconsin Stat. § 68.12 explains when a determination is final under municipal administrative proceedings. However, municipal authorities do not have § 68.11 hearings when considering whether to issue highway orders, and therefore this provision is inapplicable here. 11 Nos. 2015AP1016 & 2015AP1119 final resolution or order taking or affecting such land . . . shall be unless notice a to any certified subsequent copy purchaser thereof, or encumbrancer containing a legal description . . . of the land affected thereby, and accompanied with a map showing the location thereof, is recorded in the office of the register of deeds of the county in which the land is situated." ¶25 § 840.11(2); see also Wis. Stat. § 107.25. Moreover, when real estate is bought or sold, it is to the records of the register of deeds that one looks in a title search for restrictions on land. One purpose recording in the register of deeds is to ensure the public has notice of any changes to real property that occur. § 59.43 (2015-16). See generally, Wis. Stat. Therefore, a town's decision in regard to laying out, altering or discontinuing a highway is not final until the register of deeds records the town's highway order. ¶26 Furthermore, the precise geographic location of the highway in its new form is not provided to the public until the register of deeds records the town's highway order. Stat. § 82.12(2) ("If the town has an official See Wis. map, the [highway] order shall be incorporated into the official map."). Persons seeking to appeal a town's decision laying out, altering or discontinuing a highway may not know the metes and bounds description of the new form of the highway before it is recorded 12 Nos. by the register of deeds.18 2015AP1016 & 2015AP1119 Therefore, the triggering event for judicial review of a highway order cannot commence prior to the public being notified of the precise characteristics of the order, i.e. until the register of deeds records it. It would be imprudent to a decision about precise, recorded expect persons whether to or parties to make seek review order. highway certiorari And, this for reasoned without reason, generally require a written order from which to appeal. a we See generally, Ramsthal Advertising Agency v. Energy Miser, Inc., 90 Wis. 2d 74, 75, 279 N.W.2d 491 (Ct. App. 1979) ("An order, to be appealable, must be in writing and filed." (citation omitted)); Helmrick v. Helmrick, 95 Wis. 2d 554, 556, 291 N.W.2d 582 (Ct. App. 1980). ¶27 Beginning the thirty-day period on the date on which the register of deeds records the order also gives effect to the word "receipt" in the phrase "receipt determination" in Wis. Stat. § 68.13(1). recording a highway order gives the of the final The register of deeds public receipt of the proposed highway alteration. ¶28 the The practical benefits of concluding that recording highway order starts the thirty-day 18 period for judicial Of course, notice pursuant to Wis. Stat. § 82.10 provides similar information prior to the hearing. However, the information provided is subject to change at the hearing or at any time prior to the recordation of the highway order by the register of deeds. For this reason, notice given antecedent to the hearing may not provide individuals with this information. 13 Nos. review are significant. definite triggering period.19 2015AP1016 & 2015AP1119 Specifically, it provides a clear and event for commencement of the thirty-day And, persons and parties seeking certiorari review of a highway order easily can ascertain the start of that thirtyday period. The deadline for filing a certiorari petition will be the same for all, and factual disputes as to the date by which a certiorari action should have been filed will be less frequent. ¶29 review Accordingly, of discontinue a a town a person board's highway must or party seeking decision to file petition the lay out, for certiorari alter or certiorari review within thirty days of the register of deeds recording the highway order. 19 This triggering event for finality and receipt As the court of appeals explained: There are several positive aspects to this interpretation. First, it creates a certiorari filing date that is the same for all potential petitioners. Second, the date of recording will normally be easy to establish from the record. Third, the recording of the highway order creates a wide potential for notice to potential petitioners, because this is a place that attorneys and others will know to check for land records. Fourth, at the time it is recorded, the highway order will be in its final legal form, thus allowing potential petitioners to fully evaluate its effects and decide whether to seek judicial review. Pulera v. Town of Richmond and Town of Johnstown, Nos. 2015AP1016 and 2015AP1119, unpublished certification (Wis. Ct. App. Dec. 23, 2015). 14 Nos. 2015AP1016 & 2015AP1119 of the highway order is consistent with the language and context of the relevant statutes.20 D. ¶30 Circuit Circuit Court Interpretations of Wis. Stat. § 68.13 The Walworth Court each County reached Circuit a Court different and Rock conclusion County when interpreting Wis. Stat. § 68.13 in the context of this highway order. Each court's interpretation, while understandable, is ultimately, unpersuasive. ¶31 The Walworth County Circuit Court concluded that the appeal period during which a certiorari action may be filed starts when a town board votes to lay out, alter or discontinue a highway. The court concluded that "receipt of a final determination" under Wis. Stat. § 68.13(1) occurs when the town board votes. Accordingly, persons and parties would have thirty days from the board's vote laying out, altering or discontinuing a highway during which to commence a certiorari review of the town board's decision. ¶32 However, this interpretation is inconsistent with the plain language of Wis. Stat. § 68.13 and Wis. Stat. § 82.12. 20 A different triggering event must apply when a town board votes not to lay out, alter or discontinue a highway. In such a case, the town will not issue a highway order, so there will be nothing to record. Also, different provisions govern finality of such a decision. See Wis. Stat. § 82.12(3) ("The determination not to issue a highway order shall be final for one year. No application to lay out, alter, or discontinue a highway shall be filed within one year from the date of a determination not to issue a highway order covering the highway or portion of the highway covered in the refused application."). 15 Nos. 2015AP1016 & 2015AP1119 The vote of a town board is not what is appealable under Wis. Stat. § 82.15. It is a highway order that is appealable. Every town board vote will not result in a highway order, e.g., when a town board votes against laying out, altering or discontinuing a highway. Wis. Stat. § 82.12(3). In addition, the circuit court's interpretation reads the word "receipt" out of § 68.13 because persons and parties are not in "receipt" of the highway order when the board votes. ¶33 Moreover, there would be significant practical difficulties with beginning the period for judicial review with a town board vote. Notably, Wis. Stat. § 82.12 does not contain a requirement that an aggrieved person or party be present at the vote. And, even though a party may be present at the board meeting where a vote is taken, there is nothing to suggest that a person who is aggrieved, but not present at the town board meeting, would board's vote. have any way of receiving notice of a town However, as discussed above, the register of deeds' recording of the highway order does provide receipt by public notice of The Rock laying out, altering or discontinuing a highway. ¶34 County Circuit Court concluded that the thirty-day period for an appeal was triggered by actual notice of the board's decision. However, this interpretation does not give effect to each word in the relevant statutes insofar as it reads the word "receipt" and "final determination" out of Wis. Stat. § 68.13(1). See Kalal, 271 Wis. 2d 633, ¶46 ("Statutory 16 Nos. 2015AP1016 & 2015AP1119 language is read where possible to give reasonable effect to every word, in order to avoid surplusage." (citing Martin, 162 Wis. 2d at 894)). ¶35 A town board issues a highway order which the register of deeds records. Wis. Stat. § 82.12(2). But nothing in the statutes requires a town board to provide interested persons with a copy of the highway order. Therefore, no person or party is statutorily required to be in "receipt" of a town board's final determination other than the town clerk, highway commissioner and the register of deeds. the county Wis. Stat. § 82.12(2). ¶36 Moreover, a person or party may receive actual notice that there will be changes to the highway before the highway order is filed with the register of deeds or incorporated into the official map of the town due to filing with the town clerk. Wis. Stat. § 82.12(2) ("The highway order shall be recorded with the register of deeds for the county in which the highway is or will be located and shall be filed with the town clerk. The town clerk shall submit a certified copy of the order to the county highway commissioner. the order shall be If the town has an official map, incorporated into the official map."). Choosing alternate places in which a highway order is filed could result in inconsistent dates as triggering events for the thirty-day period during which Stat. § 68.13 is available. 17 certiorari review under Wis. Nos. ¶37 2015AP1016 & 2015AP1119 Neither the Walworth County Circuit Court's nor the Rock County Circuit Court's interpretation fully comports with the language of Wis. Stat. § 68.13 in the context of Wis. Stat. § 82.15. Therefore, as explained above, we reject those interpretations and conclude that the thirty-day period during which judicial review of a highway order may be commenced starts on the date that the register of deeds records the highway order. E. ¶38 Timeliness of Pulera's Petitions In the present case, both of Pulera's petitions were timely filed.21 Each petition was filed in circuit court within thirty days of the dates on which registers of deeds recorded each highway order. The Richmond Town Board's order was recorded by the Walworth County Register of Deeds on October 3, 2014. action, And, within the thirty-day period for filing a certiorari on certiorari November review of 3, 2014, the Pulera highway filed order in a petition Walworth for County Circuit Court.22 21 We assume without deciding that Pulera was aggrieved by the highway orders. 22 Although the action was filed 31 days after October 3, 2014, it falls within the thirty-day filing deadline because the thirtieth day, November 2, 2014, was a Sunday. See Wis. Stat. § 801.15(1)(b) ("Notwithstanding ss. 985.09 and 990.001(4), in computing any period of time prescribed or allowed by chs. 801 to 847, by any other statute governing actions and special proceedings, or by order of court, the day of the act, event or default from which the designated period of time begins to run shall not be included. The last day of the period so computed shall be included, unless it is a day the clerk of courts office (continued) 18 Nos. ¶39 2015AP1016 & 2015AP1119 Likewise, Pulera's petition for certiorari review in Rock County Circuit Court was timely filed. The register of deeds recorded the Town of Johnstown's highway order on November 3, 2014, and Pulera timely filed a petition for certiorari review in Rock County Circuit Court on December 1, 2014. III. ¶40 CONCLUSION Accordingly, we conclude that the thirty-day period during which certiorari review is available for a town board's highway order to lay out, alter or discontinue a highway begins to run on the date that the highway order is recorded by the register of deeds. This interpretation best comports with the language and structure of § 82.15. Wis. Stat. § 68.13 and Wis. Stat. And, in addition, it provides aggrieved persons and parties a date certain for commencement of the thirty-day period during which judicial review of a highway order is available. ¶41 the dates Pulera's petitions were filed within thirty days of on which registers of deeds. orders granting the highway orders were recorded by the Accordingly, we reverse the circuit courts' the town boards' motion to dismiss Pulera's petitions and remand for certiorari review in either Walworth County Circuit Court and Rock parties may agree. is closed."). 19 County Circuit Court, as the Nos. 2015AP1016 & 2015AP1119 By the Court.—The orders of the circuit courts are reversed and the cause is remanded.23 ¶42 DANIEL KELLY, J., did not participate. 23 Justice Annette Kingsland Ziegler and Justice Michael J. Gableman join this opinion. Justice Rebecca Grassl Bradley joins only the mandate of reversal. 20 Nos. ¶43 REBECCA GRASSL BRADLEY, J. 2015AP1016 & 2015AP1119.rgb (concurring). I join the mandate of the lead opinion reversing the circuit courts' orders and remanding reasoning. for certiorari review, but I cannot join its The legislature imposes upon this court the hopeless task of reconciling Wis. Stat. § 82.15——which permits a person aggrieved by a highway order or a refusal to issue one to seek judicial review under Wis. Stat. § 68.13(1)——with the language of § 68.13, which allows "[a]ny party to a proceeding resulting in a final determination," to seek certiorari review "within 30 days of receipt of the final determination." Here, Pulera was not a "party to a proceeding," there was no set process for sending her (or anyone else) a "final determination," and no procedure assured determination. any Faced person's with this "receipt" conundrum, of the the lead final opinion creates its own procedure governing the deadline for filing a petition for certiorari following the issuance of a highway order. Although the lead opinion attempts to make the language of statute the fit statutory analysis. these circumstances, I cannot join its As the court of appeals explained in its certification to this court, the statutory language enacted by the legislature process" and has lacks "little any connection "useful to guidance." the It highway is not order this court's job to make up the law, but the lead opinion does so because the legislature unmindfully incorporated the statutory language governing municipal administrative appeals (§ 68.13) into the statute governing appeals over highway orders (§ 82.15) where it simply does not fit. 1 Nos. ¶44 2015AP1016 & 2015AP1119.rgb Nonetheless, I join the lead opinion in reversing and remanding because I conclude Pulera's petition is not untimely. None of the three proposed trigger dates work, and Pulera did not receive a "final determination" because the notice she received did not include the map the statute dictates must be included in order to be a "highway order."1 The time period for certiorari review would not expire until 30 days after Pulera received the "final determination"——that containing the requisite scale map. is, a highway order I would not create the bright-line rule set forth in the lead opinion, but I agree with the mandate. ¶45 Accordingly, I respectfully concur. I write separately for three reasons: (1) to urge the legislature to enact a statute specifically governing appeals challenging the issuance of and refusal to issue highway orders; (2) to question whether Pulera was "aggrieved" by the Towns' highway orders or whether Pulera was instead aggrieved by Rock County's alteration of the intersection before the highway orders were issued and recorded with the register of deeds; and (3) to highlight Rock County's apparent disregard for Chapter 82 by reconstructing the roads before obtaining the statutorilyrequired highway orders. 1 A "highway order" what the order intends to affected by the order." inclusion of a scale map order. must include "a legal description of accomplish and a scale map of the land Wis. Stat. § 82.01(3). Requiring the necessitates a written and not an oral 2 Nos. 2015AP1016 & 2015AP1119.rgb I ¶46 In 2011, this court decided Dawson v. Town of Jackson, 2011 WI 77, 336 Wis. 2d 318, 801 N.W.2d 316, which described the lack of orders: clarity in Wis. Stat. § 68.13(1) regarding highway "The phrase 'receipt of a final determination' is not clear in the context of a highway order." Wis. 2d 318, ¶66 n.5. decision deny a to In Dawson, request for a which See Dawson, 336 involved highway order, a this town's court surmised that the 30-day time limit might be triggered by either the date the town votes to "grant or deny" a request involving a highway order or "the date that a notice of that determination is received by an (emphasis added). applicant, if a notice is sent." Id. This court resolved Dawson without deciding the trigger date for the 30-day time limit because, no matter what trigger deadline. ¶47 date applied, Dawson did not meet the 30-day Id. Six years later, this court is called upon again to apply the incongruous words the statutes say control an appeal of a highway order. Read together, the statutes are so unclear that the two circuit courts deciding Pulera's petitions applied different trigger dates. The Walworth County Circuit Court dismissed Pulera's petition as untimely by using the date the Town voted to issue the highway order because Pulera attended the meeting. In contrast, the Rock County Circuit Court dismissed Pulera's petition as untimely because she did not file it within 30 days of receiving "actual" notice of the not-yetrecorded highway order. 3 Nos. ¶48 As the court of appeals interpretations are problematic. trigger date disregards ignores the the statutory 2015AP1016 & 2015AP1119.rgb explained, Using the town vote as the "receipt" definition language of of the "highway would give notice only to persons in attendance. of the unrecorded highway both order is statute, order," and Using receipt problematic because the statutes do not contemplate sending an aggrieved person a copy of the highway order. A receipt-based trigger date could also vary from person to person, depending on when each aggrieved person requested and received the highway order. In the present case, Pulera received the highway orders only because she asked each Town to send them, and what she received did not constitute statutorily-compliant highway orders because they did not include maps. ¶49 Pulera suggests a third possible trigger date: the date the highway orders are recorded with the register of deeds. She argues that recording signifies a final determination and provides a date certain that will be the same for any person aggrieved. The lead opinion adopts Pulera's approach and decides the trigger date is the date the highway order is filed with the register of deeds. Although this resolution may sound reasonable, it does not come from the language of the statute the legislature tells us to apply. ¶50 My analysis focuses on the text of the statute: "Any party to a proceeding resulting in a final determination may seek review thereof by certiorari within 30 days of receipt of the final determination." Wis. Stat. § 68.13(1). 4 "Receipt" is Nos. not defined in the statute, but 2015AP1016 & 2015AP1119.rgb according to Black's Law Dictionary it means "[t]he act of receiving something" or "[a] written acknowledgement that something has been Receipt, Black's Law Dictionary (10th ed. 2014). dictionary similarly receiving" or "[a] defines written "receipt" acknowledgment article . . . has been received." Dictionary (5th ed. 2011). as Receipt, received." A non-legal "[t]he that a act of specified American Heritage The statutory language says the 30 days begin to run on the date the person is in "receipt of the final determination." the final How can a person be deemed in receipt of determination at the time recorded at the register of deeds? the highway order is The register of deeds is certainly in "receipt" when the document is recorded, but under the plain meaning of "receipt" no aggrieved person could be in "receipt" by virtue of such recording. How could an aggrieved person know the highway order has been recorded? Would this require an aggrieved person to check the register of deeds daily after the town vote? Here, Rock and Walworth Counties each recorded the highway order at the respective register of deeds on different dates: Rock recorded its highway order 55 days after the joint town meeting, and Walworth recorded its highway order 24 days after the joint town meeting. So, should the lead opinion's bright-line rule run 30 days from the first recording or 30 days from the last recording? Would this interpretation be subject to a discovery rule, making "receipt" the date the aggrieved person discovers or should have discovered the highway order has been recorded? Whatever 5 "receipt" means in the Nos. 2015AP1016 & 2015AP1119.rgb statute, the general recording of a document at the register of deeds cannot possibly constitute receipt by any person aggrieved by a highway order. If this is what the legislature had in mind it could have plainly said so. ¶51 years The legislature has been on notice for at least six (since this court decided Dawson) that the statutory language it tells us to apply in highway order cases does not work, and I write to urge the legislature to enact a statute outlining timeframes for appealing the issuance of a highway order as well as the denial of a highway order. legislature suggests, choose. will but the adopt the trigger legislature rather Perhaps the date the lead opinion than this court should If the legislature selects the date of recording at the register of deeds for issued orders, it must enact a separate trigger date for cases where the town board refuses to issue a highway order, because refusals do not require a recording at the register of deeds. needed, and I Clarity in this area of the law is respectfully urge the legislature to promptly address it. II ¶52 was As a foundational matter, I question whether Pulera aggrieved by the Towns' retroactive highway orders or whether Pulera was instead aggrieved by Rock County's act of altering the intersection before the Towns issued highway orders and recorded them with the register of deeds. § 68.06 defines individual . . . whose a "person rights, aggrieved" duties 6 Wisconsin Stat. or as privileges "any are Nos. 2015AP1016 & 2015AP1119.rgb adversely affected by a determination of a municipal authority."2 By the time the Towns voted to issue the highway orders, the construction project altering the intersection was done. How can these hollow highway orders have aggrieved anyone? The orders were an after-the-fact formality to dot the i's and cross the t's. The highway orders were not the official approval permitting the project to begin; they were ostensibly a way to legitimize what had already been finished a year earlier. ¶53 the Pulera complains that she was adversely affected by alteration of the intersection. It appears to me her grievance lies with Rock County, which altered an intersection and discontinued highway 2 orders.3 two She existing was not roads without aggrieved by the the requisite issuance of Note that Wis. Stat. § 68.01 provides: Any person having a substantial interest which is adversely affected by an administrative determination of a governing body, board, commission, committee, agency, officer or employee of a municipality or agent acting on behalf of a municipality as set forth in 68.02, may have such determination reviewed as provided in this chapter. 3 I acknowledge that Pulera attempted to challenge the Rock County Board of Supervisors' reversal of its decision precluding the proposed redesign of the intersection, and that her petition seeking judicial review was dismissed on the ground that the County's action was not reviewable because it was a "legislative enactment," see Wis. Stat. § 68.03(1), and because Wis. Stat. § 82.01(6) applies only to cities, villages, and towns. See Pulera v. Coopman, No. 2013AP322, unpublished slip op. (Wis. Ct. App. Nov. 13, 2013). In that case it appears, however, that Pulera only sought review of the Rock County Board of Supervisor's reversal of its initial decision to leave the intersection as it was. That suit did not challenge Rock County's or the Rock County Highway Department's physical alteration of the intersection without any apparent fulfillment (continued) 7 Nos. paperwork that obviously had no 2015AP1016 & 2015AP1119.rgb effect on a completed construction project. III ¶54 but A related issue lurks beneath the surface of this case neither Department party raised violate discontinuing the town it: law roads did by the altering without statutorily-required highway order? Rock an County Highway intersection and obtaining the first The record is limited as to why the Rock County Highway Department ignored the statutorilyrequired procedures set forth in Wis. Stat. ch. 82, "Town Highways." ¶55 Some facts are not in dispute. The intersection at County Highway M and North County Line Road was changed. roads were eliminated. Town North County Line Road runs along the border with Rock County on one side and Walworth County on the other. Construction began in June 2012 and was completed by August 2013. ¶56 Wisconsin Stat. §§ 82.10-.12 set forth the procedures controlling such construction. Sections 82.10(1) and (2) of the procedural requirements of Wis. Stat. § 82.21(1)(b), which provides that "[t]he procedure to lay out, alter, or discontinue a highway on the line between a town and another town . . . shall begin only when . . . in each affected municipality . . . [t]he town board, city council, or village board introduces a resolution to lay out, alter, or discontinue a town line highway." (Emphasis added.) Although a county board has broad discretion in addressing highway construction projects under Wis. Stat. § 83.03(1), this intersection involved town roads. When town roads are involved, the county must comply with the law set forth in Wis. Stat. ch. 82. 8 Nos. 2015AP1016 & 2015AP1119.rgb identify who can initiate the process and the documents required to do so. Sections 82.10(3) and (4) provide notice requirements and specify who must receive notice. Section 82.11 requires the town the board highway" to and "personally "hold a examine public hearing highway to or proposed decide, in its discretion, whether granting the application or resolution is in the public interest." Section 82.12 describes the time the town board has to decide whether to issue or not issue the highway order, as well as the recording requirements if a highway order is issued. ¶57 Rock County did not follow the statutory before beginning or completing construction. construction before getting highway orders process The County began from either Town. When the Town Board of Richmond sent a letter to the Rock County Highway Department explaining it unanimously voted to leave the intersection as is, it was ignored. The position of the Town Board of Johnstown is not as apparent. What is clear is that neither Town issued highway orders until after construction was completed in August 2013. The statutorily-required highway orders were issued only after the Richmond Town Board and the Johnstown Town Board held a joint meeting on September 9, 2014. The Richmond Town Board recorded its highway order approving the new intersection on October 3, 2014. The Johnstown Town Board recorded its highway order approving the new intersection on November 3, 2014. County Highway From this record, it appears that the Rock Department did not follow the statutory procedures in Wis. Stat. ch. 82, performed the construction in 9 Nos. 2015AP1016 & 2015AP1119.rgb violation of the law, and thereby forced the Towns' issuance of highway orders. ¶58 Laws are not written to be ignored. People who live and work in these towns travel these roads and are affected by the layout of town highways. The legislature has determined that when town highways are "laid out, altered, or discontinued" certain procedures affording notice and due process to those most affected Department must be apparently followed. decided The these Rock laws County did Highway not apply. Regardless of whether there are facts not in this record to explain Rock County's actions, all county highway departments changing a town's highways should take care to follow the basic procedures and law set forth in Wis. Stat. ch. 82. follow affected these by procedures the decisions deprives of people their who governing are For these reasons, I respectfully concur. 10 adversely bodies meaningful recourse. ¶59 Failure to of any Nos. ¶60 ANN WALSH BRADLEY, J. 2015AP1016 & 2015AP1119.awb (dissenting). We are asked to determine what event triggers the thirty-day deadline for filing a certiorari petition for judicial review of a town highway order. Specifically, we are tasked with interpreting the terms of Wis. Stat. § 68.13(1) (providing for certiorari review) in conjunction with the terms of Wis. Stat. § 82.15 (governing appeals of highway orders). ¶61 There are several areas of intrinsic disconnect between these statutory provisions that cannot be easily and forthrightly concerns reconciled. about these We have statutes to legislature and do so again here.1 clear answer as to when the previously the brought attention of our the Accordingly, there is no certiorari filing deadline for judicial review of a town highway order begins to run. ¶62 Given this conundrum, we are asked to discern whether either of the interpretations advanced by the parties provide a workable written. solution The under the petitioner, statutes Margaret as they Pulera, are argues currently that the triggering event is the recording with the register of deeds of a highway order adopting a proposed change. The respondents, Towns of Richmond and Johnstown, counter that the triggering event is the date of a publicly noticed hearing at which the town board votes to grant or deny a highway order. 1 See Dawson v. Town of Jackson, 2011 WI 77, 336 Wis. 2d 318, 801 N.W.2d 316. 1 Nos. ¶63 The interpretation.2 lead opinion 2015AP1016 & 2015AP1119.awb adopts Lead op., ¶2. the petitioner's According to the lead opinion, it is the recording of the highway order with the register of deeds that "best comports with the language and structure of Wis. Stat. § 68.13 and Wis. Stat. § 82.15." ¶64 Id. As the court of appeals certification acknowledged, there are strengths and flaws to each interpretation.3 The lead 2 I use the term "lead" opinion for two reasons. First, I am concerned that without this cue, the reader may mistakenly believe that the first opinion has precedential value. Although four justices join in the mandate of the opinion to reverse the circuit courts' orders and remand for certiorari review (Roggensack, C.J., joined by Ziegler, J., Gableman J., and Rebecca Grassl Bradley, J.), it represents the reasoning of only three justices (Roggensack, C.J., joined by Ziegler, J., and Gableman, J.). Kelly, J., did not participate. Accordingly, there is no opinion that represents the reasoning of the majority of the court. Second, I use the term "lead" opinion because although it is undefined in our Internal Operating Procedures, its use here is consistent with past description. I have said "that a lead opinion is one that states (and agrees with) the mandate of a majority of the justices, but represents the reasoning of less than a majority of the participating justices." State v. Lynch, 2016 WI 66, ¶ 143, 371 Wis.2d 1, 885 N.W.2d 89 (Abrahamson & Ann Walsh Bradley, J.J., concurring in part, dissenting in part) (citing Hoffer Props., LLC v. State, Dep't of Transp., 2016 WI 5, 366 Wis.2d 372, 874 N.W.2d 533); see also State v. Weber, 2016 WI 96, ¶83 n. 1, 372 Wis. 2d 202, 887 N.W.2d 554 (Ann Walsh Bradley, J., dissenting). 3 In Pulera v. Town of Richmond and Town of Johnston, Nos. 2015AP1016 and 2015AP1119, unpublished certification (Wis. Ct. App. Dec. 23, 2015), the court of appeals discussed three possible triggering events: (1) the town board vote on a proposed highway change; (2) the recording of a highway order adopting a proposed change; or (3) actual notice of the town board's determination. (continued) 2 Nos. opinion errs in failing interpretation it adopts. to 2015AP1016 & 2015AP1119.awb acknowledge the flaws of the In particular, adopting the date of the recording of the highway order addresses only half of the problem. when a It provides no triggering event for certiorari review town board issues no highway order because it votes against a proposed change. Additionally, the necessary notice that the will be provided by lead opinion's procedure is unpredictable at best and illusory at worst. ¶65 Contrary to the lead opinion, I determine that the date of the town vote is the event triggering the deadline for certiorari review. Admittedly, the date of the town vote does not fit perfectly with the statutory language. However, this The strengths and flaws of the first two approaches advanced by the parties are set forth in the analysis section below. Because neither party asks this court to adopt the date of actual notice as the triggering event, I do not analyze it. Nevertheless, I set forth the advantages and disadvantages of that interpretation as proffered in the certification of the court of appeals. It explained that one positive aspect of this interpretation was that it closely tracked the statutory language requiring "receipt of a final determination." Wis. Stat. § 68.13(1). However, it acknowledged that a significant flaw in this interpretation is that there is no requirement in the town highway chapter that highway orders be sent to anyone other than the register of deeds, the town clerk, and the county highway commissioner. Wis. Stat. § 82.12(2). Additionally, the court of appeals determined that if the thirty-day deadline for each petitioner starts to run from only the petitioner's receipt of the highway order, this could lead to a continuing series of certiorari filing dates that are individual to each potential petitioner. This would result in problems due to lack of finality and leave the town uncertain as to when it could begin the actual road work without the possibility of judicial review. 3 Nos. interpretation has the advantage of 2015AP1016 & 2015AP1119.awb providing notice and a review procedure to the largest number of interested parties on a date certain. ¶66 Accordingly, I respectfully dissent. I ¶67 Before discussing the advantages and disadvantages of each interpretation, I provide a brief analysis of the statutory provisions at issue. Pursuant to Wis. Stat. § 82.15, which provides for judicial review of highway orders, "[a]ny person aggrieved by a highway order, or a refusal to issue such an order, may seek judicial review under s. 68.13." referenced that judicial "[a]ny review statute to proceeding party a provides in The cross- relevant resulting in a part final determination may seek review thereof by certiorari within 30 days of receipt of the final determination." Wis. Stat. § 68.13(1). ¶68 There are several areas of disconnect between these statutory provisions. The highway order process does not use the term "final determination" or any similar term. Nor does it have a "party to a proceeding" in the same manner as does a municipal administrative proceeding under Wis. Stat. ch. 68. Additionally, because there is no requirement that a highway order be sent to all interested parties, it is not clear how to apply the requirement that a certiorari petition be filed within thirty days of "receipt" of the "final determination." Stat. § 68.12(1). 4 Wis. Nos. ¶69 The lead opinion resolves 2015AP1016 & 2015AP1119.awb the issue presented by concluding that "the thirty-day period during which certiorari review is available for a town board's highway order to lay out, alter or discontinue a highway begins to run on the date that the highway order is recorded by the register of deeds." op., ¶2. Lead Admittedly, this interpretation has some advantages. At the time it is recorded, the highway order will be in its final legal form. with the statutory determination." ¶70 As the lead opinion explains, this comports language allowing review of a "final significant flaws Wis. Stat. § 68.13(1). However, there are several associated with determining that the recording of the highway order with the register of deeds triggers the certiorari filing deadline. footnote, First, its new as rule the lead applies opinion only to acknowledges petitioners in a seeking certiorari review of a town board vote to issue a highway order, adopting a proposed change. Lead op., ¶30 n.20. Accordingly, the lead opinion provides no solution for petitioners seeking certiorari review of a decision to deny a proposed change. it explains, will not highway order, so there will be nothing to record." Id. ¶71 are left § 82.15, "[i]n such a case, the town As issue a This is problematic because a whole category of people without the a procedure thirty-day for deadline review. for Under filing a Wis. Stat. petition for certiorari review is the same regardless of whether a town board votes for or against a proposed highway change. Yet, when a town board votes against a highway change, the lead opinion 5 Nos. leaves those potential petitioners direction or avenue for review. ¶72 2015AP1016 & 2015AP1119.awb clueless and void of any See Lead op., ¶30 n.20. Second, the lead opinion further errs in contending that "persons and parties seeking certiorari review of a highway order easily can ascertain the start of that thirty-day period." Lead op., ¶28. It should acknowledge, as the court of appeals indicated in its certification, that the only way for potential petitioners to know when the highway order is recorded is to repeatedly check the land records. See Pulera v. Town of Richmond and Town of Johnston, Nos. 2015AP1016 and 2015AP1119, unpublished certification (Wis. Ct. App. Dec. 23, 2015). reality, the lead opinion's interpretation does not In mandate notice to anyone other than the register of deeds, the town clerk, or the § 82.12(2). county highway commissioner. See Wis. Stat. For all others it is a "constantly seek and you may find" notice procedure. ¶73 Third, because there is no time limit for the recording of the highway order with the register of deeds, this interpretation review has process. the This potential constant to indefinitely seeking could delay last for the an indeterminate and unpredictable length of time. If the highway order is never filed, then any review is illusory. ¶74 Finally, the lead opinion's analogy to Wis. Stat. § 840.11, which governs petitions to alter streets, parks, and other public places, is misplaced. notice provided here is See lead op., ¶24. distinguishable because of differences between the interested parties requiring notice. 6 The the Nos. ¶75 order Wisconsin shall be Stat. § 840.11(2) notice to any 2015AP1016 & 2015AP1119.awb provides that subsequent no final purchaser or encumbrancer unless recorded in the office of the register of deeds. It is reasonable to put the onus on a potential purchaser to check with the register of deeds before purchasing property. It is less reasonable to require an unknown number of potential petitioners to continually check with the register of deeds to determine if a highway order has been recorded. II ¶76 Contrary to the lead opinion, I interpret the date of the public town vote as the event triggering the deadline for certiorari review. There are several advantages to this interpretation. ¶77 First, and most significant, it would provide all petitioners with the same filing deadline regardless of whether the town board voted to adopt or deny the proposed change. Second, factual disputes about the date of the vote are unlikely and thus the date is a date certain. Third, this is the earliest event from which the certiorari filing date could begin to run, meaning that the town board decision would become final at the earliest possible date. ¶78 Finally, before requirements must be met. a vote can be taken, notice Wisconsin Stat. § 82.10(3) requires public notice of any meeting where the town intends to vote on a resolution to reconfigure a road. "The notice shall contain a legal description of the highway to be discontinued or of the 7 Nos. 2015AP1016 & 2015AP1119.awb proposed highway to be laid out or altered and a scale map of the land that would be affected . . . ." Id. ¶79 the Like all of the possible interpretations, the date of town vote also has disadvantages. The lead opinion is correct that the vote of a town board does not create a written "highway order." Lead op., ¶20. A "highway order" is defined as a written document that contains a legal description and a scale map. the Wis. Stat. § 82.01(3). mandated public notice, Yet, as noted above, through potential petitioners have the required information. ¶80 Admittedly, not all potential petitioners may attend the town board meeting or receive notice of the vote after it occurs. Although this solution is not a perfect fit with the statutory language, the issue of notice is lessened here because a town vote on a proposed publicly noticed meeting. highway change takes place at a As the Walworth County circuit court explained in ruling that the triggering event was the date of the town board vote, "[a]nybody that is interested in what is going to happen at that intersection attends those meetings and finds out what happens." Br. of Pet., app. at 69. The circuit court further reasoned that unlike the recording of the highway order, the date of the vote would provide a specific date on which all interested parties would receive notice. ¶81 perfect Although fit, the none of the advantages possible of using interpretations this triggering event outweigh the disadvantages. event as is a the Additionally, in Dawson v. Town of Jackson, 2011 WI 77, ¶66 n.5, 336 Wis. 2d 318, 8 Nos. 801 N.W.2d 316, imperfections at this court 2015AP1016 & 2015AP1119.awb highlighted the statutory issue in this case and advanced a solution consistent with this interpretation. ¶82 In sum, I interpret the date of the town vote as the event triggering the deadline for certiorari review of a highway order. The date of the town vote does not fit perfectly with the statutory language. However, this interpretation has the advantage of providing notice and a review procedure to the largest number of interested parties on a date certain. ¶83 her I commend the petitioner in this case for advancing cause in community. than thirty the interest of ensuring safe roadways in her However, because she sought certiorari review more days after the town vote, I conclude that her petitions were untimely. ¶84 Accordingly, I respectfully dissent. ¶85 I am authorized to state ABRAHAMSON joins this dissent. 9 that Justice SHIRLEY S. Nos. 1 2015AP1016 & 2015AP1119.awb