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Aug 29

What is the Board of Zoning Appeals

Posted on August 29, 2013 at 4:22 PM by Judy Ferguson

The members of the Park City Planning Commission also serve as the Board of Zoning Appeals. If you want to build a garage within the building setback of your property, they will hear the case as it relates to a requested change to the Zoning Regulations. This type of case is called a variance; the major types of cases heard by the Board are variances and conditional uses, but the Board also hears appeals to rulings by the Zoning Administrator.

A VARIANCE is a request to change a specific rule; these are in most cases a measurement such as the height allowed for a pole sign or the proximity to a property line by a structure. The Board may authorize such variances from the terms of the regulations that will not affect the public interest, public safety and welfare. Variances may be authorized only when the Board has made findings of fact showing special conditions that a literal enforcement of the provisions of the regulations will result in unnecessary hardship for the owner, lessee or occupant of land or structures. According to state statute, any variance shall not permit any use not permitted in the zoning district in which the variance is requested.

A CONDITIONAL USE may be granted as an exception to the rules providing the establishment of only those conditional uses that are expressly authorized by the regulations. This type of permit allows the City to attach conditions specific to the particular case and to control uses which may not be desirable if they were allowed to proliferate. The location and size of the conditional use, the nature and intensity of the operation involved in or conducted in connection with it, and the location of the site with respect to streets giving access to it are such that the conditional use will not dominate the immediate neighborhood so as to prevent development and use of neighboring property in accordance with the applicable zoning district regulations.  In determining whether the conditional use will dominate the immediate neighborhood, consideration is given to the location, nature and height of buildings, structures, walls and fences on the site; and the nature and extent of landscaping and screening on the site.

An APPEAL from a decision of the Zoning Administrator with respect to the interpretation, application or enforcement of the regulations may be taken to the Board by any person aggrieved, or by any officer of the City, or any governmental agency or body affected by any decision of the Zoning Administrator.

In each of the three instances described here State Statutes dictate that a notice of hearing must be published in the official city newspaper and also that a printed notice of hearing must be sent to homeowners within 200 feet of the property in question a minimum of twenty days prior to the hearing. At the hearing the Board will ask any property owner present if they wish to speak regarding the requested case and take their information under consideration as it relates to the factors of the case. This Board actually acts as q quasi-judiciary body which means that appeals to their rulings are heard by the County District Court within thirty days of the case hearing date.


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