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Expand/Contract Questions and Answers

  • How do I get a zoning permit?

  • When do I need a permit from Land and Water Conservation?

  • How do I rezone my property?

  • Who can help me with shoreland erosion issues?

  • How do I report manure runoff?

  • What is cost sharing and what can it be used for?


The Portage County Zoning Ordinance requires property owners to apply for a Zoning Permit issued through the Portage County Planning and Zoning Department before moving forward with a number of activities.
You will need to receive a Zoning Permit before proceeding with your project if you live in the Towns of:

Alban Carson Linwood 
Almond Dewey  New Hope 
Amherst Eau Pleine  Plover 
Belmont Hull  Sharon 
Buena Vista Lanark  Stockton 


Residents of the Towns of Grant and Pine Grove will also need a Portage County Zoning Permit if their project is located within Shoreland or Floodplain areas.

When is a Zoning Permit Required? Click here

Prior to making application for a Zoning Permit, you will need to:

  • Identify the Zoning District for your property (utilizing our GIS Website )
  • Review the list of Permitted Uses to see if your intended use is allowable in your Zoning District.

If your proposed use is identified as a Permitted Use, you are ready to move ahead with the Zoning Permit application process. If your proposed use is either listed as a Special Exception, or not listed, you will need to go through a separate process, through the Portage County Board of Adjustment. Please contact our office with questions on either of these processes.

Zoning Permit Application Process

Board of Adjustment Process

Zoning Permits are required to approve a proposed use of property, based on the Portage County Zoning Ordinance requirements for the property. An additional "building permit", is typically required separately by the State of Wisconsin for actual construction of a structure, and is available through Building Inspectors who are retained individually by each Town in Portage County. Other permits may also be required by individual Towns or other agencies.

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