Now, unfortunately, zoning is not a “one size fits all” type of concept. There are situations where a variance can and maybe should be granted to help our residents stay in their homes and live happily as long as, and this is the important part, as long as it does not negatively impact their neighbors.
Too many times in the past, homes were built or expanded upon where it had devastating effects on surrounding homes and neighborhoods. That is why in 2004 I called for a moratorium on variances being granted. Because of it and I was maligned by some colleagues, developers, and even residents that had hopes of further modifying their existing property. The reason for the moratorium was to put in place an ordinance that still stands today that limits how and when someone may even apply for a variance, let alone be granted one. It was to also signal to our Zoning Board of Appeals that we stood in opposition to any type of project that would have any kind of adverse effect on their neighbor(s).Some of the proposals and ordinance changes that I’ve been proud to part of include; downsizing homes being built in the Point of Pines to one family only; limiting what can be built in the 100 year flood plain, and encouraging commercial development by voting and promoting our community as an Economic Target Area and encouraging quality commercial development using Tax Incentive Financing. Long term, this will bring down residential tax rates.