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ADDRESSING THE BOARD OF ZONING APPEALS
 
The public is invited to speak to the Board of Zoning Appeals during the public hearing portion of any item under discussion.
Please raise your hand or approach the podium, and after receiving recognition from the Chair, state your name and address.
Generally speaking, the order of presentation after introduction of any item by the Chair will be:
  • Determination if the applicant or his/her representative is present.

  • Staff report and recommendation.

  • Comments by the applicant.

  • Comments by interested citizens (for, against, or neutral). 

  • Additional comments by the applicant and/or citizens, as appropriate.

  • Closing of public hearing by the Chair.

  • Board of Zoning Appeals discussion and action.

 

Applicants and citizens are requested to limit your remarks and to not repeat comments made by previous speakers. If there are numerous people in the audience who would like to speak on the issue, and all represent the same opinion, it is advised that a speaker be selected to speak for the entire group. A representative will thus have the opportunity of speaking for a reasonable length of time, and of presenting a complete case. If this arrangement cannot be made, it may be necessary for the Chair to restrict each speaker to a limited time in order that all may be heard.
The Board of Zoning Appeals will strive to adhere to standard parliamentary procedure. However, the Board will also strive to be fair and flexible to insure that all citizens will be heard.


GUIDELINES FOR PUBLIC HEARING

  • Order of presentation. Before the first item, the Chair should go over the order of presentation and refer to the back of the agenda.
  • Questions of the applicant. Since the burden of proof is on the applicant to make their case, questions to the applicant or applicant representatives can be made through the Chair. It is advisable not to go into too much detail, though, until after other public comments are received.

  • Citizen comments.

    Board members are encouraged not to question citizens because it tends to drag on the proceeding. Members will have a chance after the public hearing is closed to state whether or not they agree with specific comments made by the public.

    ** If there are numerous people in the audience who would like to speak on the issue, and all represent the same opinion, it is advised that a speaker be selected to speak for the entire group. A representative will thus have the opportunity of speaking for a reasonable length of time, and of presenting a complete case. If this arrangement cannot be made, it may be necessary for the Chair to restrict each speaker to a limited time in order that all may be heard.

  • Summarization by the applicant. One representative for the applicant should always be given a chance to give a brief presentation after other public comments are heard. Comments from citizens (pro or con) that already have been given a chance to speak should not be allowed, unless the Chair determines that the citizen has additional relevant information.

  • Questions after the public hearing is closed. Once the public hearing is closed, questions to the applicant can be made through the Chair.

  • Procedure after the public hearing is closed. Discussion on a motion may not occur until after a second is made.

  • Findings of fact. Since decisions must stand up in district court, the findings should clarify the basis of the Board's decision and demonstrate that the Board weighed the evidence relative to ordinance standards. The findings should identify the critical testimony, documents, or exhibits that the board used to reach its decision. It is not sufficient for the board to merely parrot the general statutory requirements for the action taken. The facts which led the Board to reach this conclusion must be identified.