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Title VI COUNTY, TOWNSHIP AND POLITICAL SUBDIVISION GOVERNMENT

Chapter 65

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  65.690.  Board of zoning adjustment, members, terms, compensation not allowed — powers, duties — grant of variances, when — judicial review. — 1.  Any township board which appointed a township planning or township zoning commission and which has adopted a zoning plan, as provided in sections 65.650 to 65.700, shall appoint a township board of zoning adjustment.  The board shall consist of five freeholders, not more than one of whom may be a member of the township planning commission or the township zoning commission.  The membership of the first board appointed shall serve respectively:  one for one year, one for two years, one for three years, two for four years.  Thereafter, members shall be appointed for terms of four years each.  Members shall be removable for cause by the township board upon written charges and after public hearings.  Vacancies shall be filled by the township board for the unexpired term of any member whose term becomes vacant.  Members of the board shall serve without compensation, but may be reimbursed for expenses incurred for attendance at not more than four meetings per year in an amount to be set by the township board, not to exceed ten dollars per meeting.  The board of zoning adjustment shall elect its own chairman and shall adopt rules of procedure consistent with the provisions of the zoning regulations and the provisions of sections 65.650 to 65.700.  The chairman, or in his absence the acting chairman, may administer oaths and compel the attendance of witnesses.  All meetings of the board of zoning adjustment shall be open to the public, and minutes shall be kept of all proceedings and official actions, which minutes shall be filed in the office of the board and shall be a public record.  Appeals to the board of zoning adjustment may be taken by any owner, lessee or tenant of land, or by a public officer, department, board or bureau, affected by any decision of the administrative officer in administering a township zoning rule.  Such appeals shall be taken within a period of not more than three months, and in the manner provided by the rules stay all proceedings in furtherance of the action appealed from, unless the officer from whom the appeal is taken shall certify to the board that by reason of facts stated in the certificate a stay would, in his opinion, cause imminent peril to life or property.  The board of adjustment shall have the following powers and it shall be its duty:

  (1)  To hear and decide appeals where it is alleged there is error of law in any order, requirement, decision or determination made by an administrative official in the enforcement of the township zoning regulations;

  (2)  To hear and decide all matters referred to it or which it is required to determine under the zoning regulations adopted by the township board as herein provided;

  (3)  Where, by reason of exceptional narrowness, shallowness, shape of topography or other extraordinary or exceptional situation or condition of a specific piece of property, the strict application of any regulation adopted under sections 65.650 to 65.700 would result in peculiar and exceptional difficulties to or exceptional and demonstrable undue hardship upon the owner of the property as an unreasonable deprivation of use as distinguished from the mere grant of a privilege, to authorize, upon an appeal relating to the property, a variance from the strict application so as to relieve the demonstrable difficulties or hardships, provided the relief can be granted without substantial detriment to the public good and without substantially impairing the intent, purpose, and integrity of the zone plan as embodied in the zoning regulations and map.

  2.  In exercising the above powers, the board may reverse or affirm wholly or partly, or may modify the order, requirement, decision or determination appealed from and may make such order, requirement, decision or determination as ought to be made, and to that end shall have all the powers of the officer from whom the appeal is taken.  Any owners, lessees or tenants of buildings, structures or land jointly or severally aggrieved by any decision of the board of adjustment may appeal to the township board for review.  Any person aggrieved by a decision of the township board may present to the circuit court of the county in which the property affected is located, a petition, duly verified, stating that the decision is illegal in whole or in part, specifying the grounds of the illegality and asking for relief therefrom.  Upon the presentation of the petition, the court shall allow a writ of certiorari directed to the board of adjustment or the township board, respectively, of the action taken and data and records acted upon, and may appoint a referee to take additional evidence in the case.  The court may reverse or affirm or may modify the decision brought up for review.  After entry of judgment in the circuit court in the action in review, any party to the cause may prosecute an appeal to the appellate court having jurisdiction in the same manner now or hereafter provided by law for appeals from other judgments of the circuit court in civil cases.

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(L. 1989 S.B. 11 § 16)


---- end of effective   28 Aug 1989 ----

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