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The Zoning Board of Appeal's (ZBA) role and responsibility consists of providing relief, where appropriate, from literal application of the black letter law of the City’s Zoning Ordinance. The ZBA constantly deals with a continuous tension between the property rights of the applicant and the interests of neighboring property owners and its city as a whole. Members of the ZBA have to have a clear comprehension of the reasonable limitations on the ZBA’s broad authority under the Ordinance while understanding the equity component of the ZBA’s role.
The ZBA, while an independent board, works closely with the Planning Office, the Planning Director and the Planning Board. ZBA members need to be able to apply the Boards’ discretion in a measured manner without allowing personal preferences or beliefs to interfere with the even application of the ZBA’s powers.