Effective 7/1/22, the current Zoning Board of Administration will become the Development Review Board.
The Development Review Board has legally binding authority over building and development projects in Essex Junction. The Board approves or denies applications for development projects by interpreting and applying the rules spelled out in Essex Junction’s Land Development Code, zoning regulations, and Comprehensive Plan. The Board also settles appeals from builders, developers, and property owners of decisions made by the Essex Junction Zoning Administrator regarding requests for variances from zoning and land use regulations. Development Review Board meetings are considered ‘quasi-judicial hearings,’ similar to court proceedings, and the Board’s decisions are expected to be narrowly focused and well-reasoned. The Essex Junction staff provides technical and legal assistance to the Board, but Board members must be able to competently interpret and apply the logic and reasoning of Essex Junction’s Land Development Code and other applicable regulations.
The Board has five members and generally meets once a month with typical meeting times of 2-3 hours. Members must be residents of the Village of Essex Junction, soon-to-be City of Essex Junction, effective July 1, 2022. An extensive application or a higher than usual influx of applications or appeals may occasionally require more meeting time. Meetings are held live at Lincoln Hall, but Board members currently have the option of attending online. Meetings are televised and open to the public. Board members are appointed to three-year terms by the Essex Junction Trustees/City Council.
For community members interested in applying, no particular background is required, but experience with a relevant subject such as architecture, building construction, engineering, housing regulations, landscaping, or real estate is helpful. Board members must be willing to learn about Essex Junction’s building and development regulations and are expected to work collaboratively with each other to make responsible decisions and to listen respectfully and with an open mind to testimony from applicants, consultants, and members of the public. Prospective board members should also have sufficient computer skills, the capacity to receive and review background materials prior to meetings, and a general interest in architecture, landscape design, and community development.
All positions receive a $50 per meeting stipend to provide financial assistance for your participation.
For new applicants, please tell us why you are interested in joining the committee, what education, experiences, and background you bring to the committee, and what you hope to accomplish during your term. For current members wishing to be re-appointed, please tell us why you want to be re-appointed, what you have enjoyed about your time, what your committee has accomplished, and what you hope to accomplish in another term. You can complete these questions in the following form: https://forms.gle/CXnHTtwdFZoCa5aR6.