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Forms, Fees, & Applications


Zoning Petition Application

The unincorporated areas of Winnebago County are divided into multiple zoning districts. The Winnebago County Zoning Ordinance (Chapter 90) regulates the types of uses permitted in each district and the minimum requirements for each district. If the desired use of a property is not allowed by the designated zoning district, the three primary types of petitions that may be sought, but not all inclusive are:

  1. Variations: A variation is just as it sounds, it allows for the varying of the regulations of the district in instances where a particular hardship or demonstrable difficulty exists if the strict letter of the regulations were carried out. Common variations are to allow a decrease in a required rear yard setback or to allow an increase in the allowable size or height of an accessory structure.
  2. Special Use Permits: A special use permit may allow a use on a property that is not permitted outright in a zoning district because of its possible impacts on surrounding properties. Each zoning district has its own list of special uses that may be sought after. A common special use permit is to allow a business office in a residential district.
  3. Map Amendments (Rezoning): A map amendment changes the zoning district of a piece of property. This may be sought after because the desired use of the property is not permitted outright or as a special use permit in the current zoning district.

A petition is the beginning of a formalized process to initiate lawful changes in land use. For more information about the actual zoning process, click on this link Rezoning, Special Use & Variation Process.  Please contact Planning and Zoning to schedule a pre-application conference prior to submitting a petition. Petitions will not be accepted until staff has had an opportunity to review the request with the petitioner.  An application timeline is included in the Petition Application to assist the applicant.

Legal Protest Form
For amendments of regulations and districts, Section 55 ILCS 5/5 12014 of the Illinois Compiled Statutes allows written objections to be filed with the County Clerk which may ultimately change the number of votes required for zoning application passage.  Please review this form carefully prior to filing a written objection.

Subdivision Plat Review Application
Planning and Zoning is responsible for regulating the division of land in the unincorporated areas of Winnebago County. Anytime a tract of land in the unincorporated areas of the county is split into two or more parts, it may be subject to meeting the County's subdivision regulations. Subdivisions are regulated by the Winnebago County Subdivision Ordinance (Chapter 90, Articles 5 & 19) and the State of Illinois Plat Act. If you have any questions, contact Planning and Zoning prior to submitting an application.

Zoning Information Request
The above form can be used to request zoning information on a specific piece of property.  Common inquires include, but are not limited to, the permitted uses for the zoning district in which the property is located and the required setbacks for structures located on the property. Please note that a request for a written response must be accompanied by a $30.00 fee (for a basic letter, only verifies zoning district and uses allowed) or a $50.00 fee (for a plus letter, verifies zoning district, uses allowed and answers a specific question such as buildability status and/or interpretation of a specific regulation). 




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