Smart Parcel Number

New PINs

Coincidental with Bayfield County’s development and migration to a new Tax Assessment Database is the conversion from our existing 12-digit Parcel Identification Number (PIN) to a new 23-digit PIN. We have now transitioned to this new PIN. Fortunately, in most instances, this number will be dutifully working in the background, oblivious to most users. Those who must use these PINs may initially find them unwieldy, but there are sound reasons for this conversion. This new PIN system:

  • Adopts components of the Wisconsin Department of Revenue parcel numbering system
  • Has geographic significance and is tied to the Public Land Survey System
  • Supports Data Exchange Standards that require the use of unique PINs in data sharing arrangements
  • Complies with the Wisconsin Land Information Program’s recommended PIN standard
  • Will assist Bayfield County fulfill its charge to maintain records of ownership of real property

PIN Example

A new PIN may look like this: 04012243072210027819000. Confusing? Here is what that same number looks like if we clarify it by inserting some hyphens: 04-012-2-43-07-22-1-00-278-19000.


And here is a breakdown and explanation of what this all means. From left to right, the PIN numbers (04-012-2-43-07-22-1-00-278-19000) signify the following:

  • First two digits = County Code (Bayfield County is 04 as defined by Department of Revenue)
  • Next three digits = Municipal Code (Each Town, City, Village is assigned a code number)
  • Next one digit = Direction from 4th Meridian (Bayfield County is 2 [west])
  • Next two digits = Township (43 to 52)
  • Next two digits = Range (03 to 09)
  • Next two digits = Section (01 to 36)
  • Next one digit = Quarter Section (1 to 4, 0 for Government Lot)
  • Next two digits = Quarter-Quarter Section (Also includes Government Lots, Subdivisions, and Condominiums)
  • Next three digits = Entity Code (Each Subdivision or Condominium is assigned a unique number)
  • Next five digits = Parcel ID (Subdivision Lot, Block, and/or Splits)
  • Please note: The first 18 digits of the PIN are intelligent numbers that have a protocol that is consistent and fixed; the last five digits are variable.

Explanation by Number

Let us now apply our newfound knowledge by looking at the following example: PIN# 04012243072210027819000 (with hyphens, 04-012-2-43-07-22-1-00-278-19000).

04Bayfield County
012Town of Cable
2West of Fourth Meridian
43Township 43 North
07Range 7 West
22Section 22
1Northeast Quarter of Section 22
00It Is a Subdivision
278Subdivision of the Silver Birch Addition to Wilde River
19000Lot 19 of the Silver Beach Subdivision

Other Items of Interest

In order to continue to provide you with online access to Bayfield County’s land records, a couple of other changes have taken place to facilitate the conversion to the new PINs:

  • Bayfield County’s GIS Web Map has been modified to accept the new PIN, as well as the old PIN, and use those numbers to execute property ownership queries.
  • Our 2,000 individual property ownership maps, both the paper copies available at the County Courthouse, and the digital copies available on our website, have been comprehensively updated to display the new PIN. On the revised property ownership maps, the first 12 digits of the PIN, which are common to all parcels on that particular map page, will appear in the upper-left map margin. The remaining 11 digits of a specific parcel’s PIN will appear on the map either atop or connected with a leader to its respective parcel.