The La Crosse County Surveyor
is responsible for carrying out the requirements of the County Surveyor's office as specified in Chapter 59 of the Wisconsin Statutes and the La Crosse County Subdivision Control Ordinance (Chapter 18).
RESPONSIBILITIES OF THE COUNTY SURVEYOR:
- Reestablish and maintain the Corners of the Public Lands Survey (PLSS)
- Review survey maps for compliance with State Statutes & Local Ordinances
- Index and maintain copies of all surveys in the county
- Perform survey work for other government agencies
- Assist the public with land surveying and land ownership questions
Those responsibilities include preserving the corners of the Public Land Survey System, which is the basis for all legal descriptions in the County. The County Surveyor is responsible for the remonumentation, maintenance, and protection of the 1405 PLSS corners within the 481 square miles of La Crosse County and to execute all surveys that are required by the county or by a court.
- Can the County Surveyor find my lot lines? The County Surveyor does not perform survey work for private parties. He only does field work for County projects. A list of private land surveyors is available here.
- Doesn't every lot have to be surveyed? The vast majority of parcels in La Crosse County were created by written legal description and not by a field survey. Therefore it is likely that there are no physical markers in the ground to show lot corners. Surveys are now required for certain new land divisions as determined by municipal or county rules/ordinances. A bank may also require that a survey be performed.
- What marks the corners of my lot? If your parcel has indeed been surveyed (see above), it is likely that the lot corners are marked with an iron bar or iron pipe. However, many other different objects have been used as monuments. The legend on your survey map should indicate the type of monument set. Most often the monuments were set below the surface to help avoid disturbance.
- What are those signs that say 'County Survey Monument Nearby' on them? Small rectangular yellow signs are placed on metal posts near ties to PLSS corners. They are not marking the corner itself, but are placed near the corner in order to preserve its location. Please do not disturb or remove these markers! If you know of a corner monument that is endangered, please notify the County Surveyor's Office.
- Who is surveying at my neighbor's house? What if I don't agree with the surveyor's work? There are many private licensed land surveyors who work in the county. They are independent, do not work for the county, and are not supervised/approved by the county. The county cannot determine 'who is right' in a property line dispute.
- I have a GPS. Can't I just go find my lot corners with that? County parcel mapping and/or coordinates obtained from it are not to be used for surveying. Land Surveyors follow specific rules and use legal descriptions and known points for their work.